The Super Bowl is just around the corner. By all rights and a few wrongs, this should be the week when I write about football, more football and football party food. The trouble is I belong to an increasingly small minority. I am football impaired. I can blame it on my mother. Parents are as good a source of blame as any.
Anyway, I don’t ever remember watching football as a kid. On weekend afternoons and Monday nights all of our neighbors were probably enjoying game while we raked leaves, skied or maybe did homework. If our television was on, it was probably tuned to Archie Bunker or a movie. Which seems funny because we did watch baseball and hockey, lots of hockey. I think the tables may have turned once my sister and I went off to college. As far as I can figure, my dad and brother took over the remote once we left and have not missed a Patriots’ game since.
Now it’s not like I’ve never seen a football game. I was a regular at my high school and college games. Not to watch the game, mind you. I didn’t then and still don’t know the first thing about America’s favorite sport. Okay, maybe I know that the Patriots have a handsome quarterback. Anyway, as a teenager I went to games to hang out with my friends. It’s what you did on Saturday afternoons. At least that’s what we did when the Red Raiders played at home. (Go red, go black, go team, fight back.)
Once I moved to Switzerland, any hope of my becoming a football fan evaporated. It’s hard to get excited about a sport which is only played on the other side of the ocean. Even dating a diehard football fan didn’t make a dent in my impairment. Trying to be helpful, he once gave me a detailed explanation of the game. As he talked, I smiled, mumbled a few positive uh ahs and thought about skiing or hiking or who knows what.
Countless fans have told me again and again that football is filled with strategy, cunning and finesse. However, as far as I can tell, it is a bunch, make that two bunches, of very large men pushing, shoving and running into one another. On purpose. Even I know they do it on purpose because they wear helmets and all sorts of pads.
But worse than the pile ups, hitting and head butting, a football game takes FOREVER. Technically a game is made up of four fifteen-minute periods. But with time outs, huddles, breaks between periods for commercials and commentary, half time and more commercials and commentary plus stopping the clock to pick injured players up off the field, one hour stretches out to three or more. Heck, marathons are won in a little over two hours and they cover twenty-six miles! Okay, I admit it. Watching someone run twenty-six miles is a bit like watching paint dry but at least they don’t stop for nothing.
So I guess I was too hasty in my definition. Football is two bunches of very large men, pushing, shoving and running into each other and then standing around and waiting to do it again.
Now as I understand it, at least sixty-five percent, maybe as high as seventy-five percent, of all Americans will watch the Super Bowl on Sunday. If like me, you’re part of the football-impaired minority, well, you’re welcome to come over to my house.
About 4 pounds chicken wings
Spicy Tequila Marinade (recipe follows)
Using a large, sharp knife or cleaver, remove the wing tips and separate the chicken wings into 2 pieces at the joint
Put the chicken and the marinade in a re-sealable plastic bag and marinade in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Arrange the chicken on sheet pans, drizzle with any extra marinade and, turning once, bake at 400 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and golden. Alternatively, throw the chicken on a hot grill and cook for about 5 minutes per side.
Spicy Tequila Marinade
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon or to taste minced jalapeno
1-2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon or to taste dried chipotle flakes
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 cup tequila
Put the garlic, shallot, jalapeno, honey, cayenne, cumin, thyme and oregano in a blender and season with salt and pepper. With the motor running, slowly add the orange and lime juices and tequila and process until smooth and well combined.
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Want more? I’ve got links to lots more to read, see & cook as well as a day in the life photoblog! In addition, I hope that you will take a minute to learn about my philanthropic project Eat Well-Do Good. © Susan W. Nye, 2013