I’m a football fan. Growing up in Pittsburgh during the 1970′s, it was a requirement of citizenship. I’ve been to more than my fair share of games, and have participated in more than my fair share of football parties.
It always amuses me the way the Food Press treats Super BowlÂ© Sunday. God Bless ‘em, their hearts are in the right place, but for some reason, some of the folks just don’t get it.
Let’s meander over to the Food TV site and take a look of what they are pimpin’. At first it looks promising, with a focus on Buffalo Wings. But when you click on the link for Sara Moulton’s Big Game Party Guide, you start to see the cracks in their veneer.
I should say that I like Sara Moulton a fair amount. I enjoyed her live show on Food TV, and it’s quite apparent she knows food inside and out. But she misses the point of eating and football. Case in point? Her recomendation for “Make-Your-Own Salad with Lemon Garlic Dressing” as a dish for the Super BowlÂ© Sunday table. I am also particularly amused by her decorating tip that states “Use TV trays for a retro touch.” How post-modern! Intentionally dress down your living room for the game!
A while ago, I touched upon the inevitable trend of taking working people’s cuisine and dressing it up for the upper class. You can see this clearly demonstrated on Super BowlÂ© Sunday. Epicurious, Conde Naste’s website for their food mags Bon Appetit and Gourmet, has a list of 100 recipes for the Big Game. Included in this list includes such tailgate classics as “Cucumber, Sweet Onion and Mint Curried Mayonnaise on Peasant Bread”, “Goat Cheese and Pistachio Spread” and “Roasted Asparagus and Red Onion Quesadillas”. I’m sure these recipes are tasty, but the football fan in me is screaming “Where’s the Keilbasa recipes?!? Where’s the Cheesesteak recipes?!? Dammit, where are my jalepeno poppers??” There’s nothing inherently wrong with these foods either (except the fact that they’ll clog your arteries a bit faster).
I bring this up as I recieved a newsletter from a fairly well-known chef from the West Coast who suggested that one should make paella for the Super Bowl.
That *thunk* you heard was my head hitting my desk. Rice? At a football game? Are you inSANE? Perhaps one might recommend adding cilantro to hamburgers! Blasphemer!
My point here is that food provides context. One can get an exact idea of an experience by the food that one eats. When you see Pumpkin Pie and Roast Turkey, and you know it’s Thanksgiving. Egg Nog and Fruitcake? It’s Christmas. And when you see beer, chili , and Buffalo Wings, you know you’re probably at a sporting event in the States.
I’m not going to watch the Super BowlÂ© this year, as I’m still a bit stung by my team losing in the Championship game. But if I do watch, you can be damn sure I’m not going to be eating “Lettuce Scoops with Coriander Yogurt Cheese”
Yes, that was also on Epicurious’s list of football recipes