Lettuce Eat Local
“Go team, go! Get across the area and score a…goal-basket-point!”
Okay, I’m not quite that bad, but I have to go ahead and admit that I don’t know much about football. I don’t really follow sports in general, but the football I actually like to watch (for a few minutes at least) is what we Americans call soccer. I know the other kind throws a conical brown ball up and down a long field, and large players run around ramming into and tackling each other while all trying to throw the football to someone on the right spot of ground or through the right spot in the air. There are all sorts of words like quarterback, hail mary, tight end, scrimmage, etc., and some people can even follow along with all the plays and yards and hut-hut-hikes.
I am not one of those people. I feel like I did well just coming up with “tight end” on my own over here, even though I don’t know what it actually is.
But, to give myself some credit, I DO know football’s biggest game of the year is the Super Bowl, and that it just happened last Sunday. Shoot, I even knew the Chiefs and the Eagles were playing, went to a Super Bowl party, and saw the Chiefs score a run (I’m just messing with you, I know it’s a basket).
And while I do not personally align myself with any level of dedication to particular sports teams, I’m wise enough to know it doesn’t hurt to participate in some team-focused camaraderie. I clearly wanted the Chiefs to win; I know where I live and who I’ll be around and how much better my life will be. I don’t own any Chiefs sartorial paraphernalia, but I layered two red and yellow shirts, and it just so happens that I have pairs of both red and yellow Toms, so I wore one shoe of each color. If that’s not classy, I don’t know what is.
Benson, on the other hand, has a full Chiefs outfit. Like most of his clothes, I actually have no idea where it came from, but I re-found it in a drawer a couple weeks ago, and it’s so cute on him it could turn me into a football fan right there.
Brian does not dress thematically for events (unless it’s something gray), but he can sure put in some good energy and intensity into watching the game — although he wins the Most Valuable Daddy award for reading books to Benson for a good portion of Sunday’s game.
Even with all my blatant football ignorance, however, I can still appreciate a good Super Bowl party, for several reasons. While I don’t find watching the actual game appealing, I like watching people watching sports, especially when there’s a team as loved as the Chiefs playing. Also, the commercials in between the game coverage are usually interesting.
And then of course, there are the snacks. You can’t have the Super Bowl without snacks, and dishes of things like cheesy dip, guacamole, and popcorn are really the super bowls, in my opinion.
Fortunately, the party we attended had plenty of delicious snacking options, from sweet to salty and creamy to crunchy. Now that’s what I call a touchdown.
Apple-Pear Custard Tartlets’4 cups peeled, small-diced apples and pears
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ cup sour cream
½ cup milk
1 teaspoon high-oil cinnamon
a good grating of fresh nutmeg
Double-crust amount of pie pastry, cut into rounds and pressed into 18 muffin tin cups
Optional glaze: powdered sugar with a splash of milk and dash of salt
Divide diced fruit into the pastry-lined muffin cups (it should be enough for at least 18 and maybe more). Whisk together the sugar, eggs, butter, lemon juice, sour cream, milk, cinnamon and nutmeg, and pour over the fruit). Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until pastry is flaky golden and fruit is tender. Let cool fully before removing from tin. For football festiveness, make a stiff powdered sugar glaze and pipe in the shape of football laces.
It takes a little imagination, but these tiny pies are kind of like bowls, and hopefully you think they’re super — whether or not they’re for a football party. Handheld snacks are easiest for this kind of activity, so you don’t have to worry about spoons or forks flying everywhere when people cheer, and these tartlets are quick and easy enough to make right before the party, but also work to bake ahead the day before so you can save all your energy for the game.
Prep tips: If you want to make these tarts inherently Chiefs fans, use red and yellow apples — you’ll peel them before putting them in the filling, but you’ll still know whose team they’re on.