fat free opinions on a food centric life

Sliders and Bratwurst are Quick Game Day Food

It’s Friday, and much of the food world seems to be focused on one thing:  Super Bowl food. Okay, so maybe not, but I had to start this somewhere, right? Maybe it would be more accurate to say 50% of us use it as an excuse to have a party. What would game day be like without food?  We have to have something to munch on while watching those commercials!

This year, we have no plans to attend or host anything *yes*, but the Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals just might make it a good game for a change. Too often, it’s not entertaining in my opinion, so food helps make it an occasion — and not a fancy one with a lot of prep.  We go easy on the appetizers — chips, salsa and guacamole — have a meal at half-time.

It’s casual meal usually of chili or ribs.  But it could be this instead: a spin on traditional stadium food, and which can be put out allowing people to graze at their leisure.

Southwest Sliders in honor of the Cardinals…

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…and Bratwurst Dogs with Peppers & Onions in honor of the Steelers.

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I’m not sure who I’m pulling for, but I am a Zonie by birth.  ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL?

Southwest Sliders

lean ground beef
canned green chilies, drained & chopped
minced red onions
dash dried oregano
minced garlic
chili powder
dried red pepper flakes
salt & pepper
egg
Dinner rolls, sliced

In a bowl with very clean hands, squish all ingredients together and separate the mixture into golf-ball sized balls.  Flatten them out making sure the edges are smooth and put them on a plate in the refrigerator.

Prepare your fixings and arrange on a bit platter:  Spicy mustard, Herdez Salsa Verde, extra sharp chipotle cheddar slices, avocado slices splashed with lime and sprinkled with salt, tomatoes, and fresh sprigs of cilantro.

Toast the inside of the buns until brown and pile in a big bowl.  Griddle or grill the sliders and add the cheese at the end of cooking time so it can melt a bit.  Arrange the sliders on a big plate.

Let everybody put their own together, and then laugh when they ask you, “Just how do youthink I’m going to get this in my mouth?”

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Notes:

  • Make sure the meat patties are flattened a bit larger than the buns to allow for shrinkage during cooking.
  • Sure, if you twisted my arm, I’d put bacon on these.
  • We’ve made a variety of these:  Greek inspired with lamb and some tzatziki and a sprinkle of feta; or BBQ style with grilled onions and a spicy sauce.  They’re fun to play with.
  • Plan on at least 2-3 for the big guys.  One is plenty for me, but yes, I ate two.  They go down pretty easily.  Pile on the veggies and you don’t feel too guilty.

Bratwurst Dogs with Peppers & Onions

bratwurst, smoked sausage, bangers, or any other type of “dog” you enjoy
chopped garlic
thick sliced onions
sliced bell peppers
tomato wedges
cheese
seedy stone ground mustard
thick sandwich rolls, sliced

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Cook your dogs either on a griddle or grill until piping hot.  While this is going on, in a skillet with a couple tablespoons of olive oil, add the onions and cook until beginning to soften and add the garlic.  Add the peppers and cook until the mixture is soft, beginning to brown, but still has shape.  Season with salt and pepper.  Put in a large bowl and keep warm.

Toast the sandwich rolls under the broiler, on a griddle or grill until brown.

On a large platter, arrange the dogs, buns, tomatoes, cheese, and mustard.  Place the bowl of onions & peppers nearby and let everyone make their own dogs.

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Notes:

  • These are so good.  Our grocery store has lots of different kinds of sausage so it’s fun to have a variety for people to choose from.  Andouille is excellent!
  • Don’t overcook the onions and peppers.  It’s nice to have some crunch left when you take a big bite.