Recipes, Etc.

With the ensuing championship football games coming around soon, such as the College Football Playoff National Championship Game between Alabama and Georgia on January 8 and the ever-popular Super Bowl on February 4, let’s think of some simple things to serve in a different fashion.

First of all, how about a large taco salad being arranged on a large cutting board or a large platter by using two heads of iceberg lettuce, cored, quartered and shredded l/4 to l/2 inch thick Take one white onion, chopped or a bunch of green onions, chopped up and three or four vine plum tomatoes, seeded and diced.

Mix and toss into the iceberg lettuce and set aside. In a bowl, combine a dressing of your own choosing, or for example, a Chipotle-Lime Dressing, drizzle lightly over the lettuce mixture and reserve the rest to pass at the table. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Arrange bag of taco chips on baking sheet and top with sharp cheddar. Bake to melt cheese and toast chips (6-7 minutes). Top the lettuce with this taco chip mixture. In a large skillet brown 2 lbs. ground beef, season with salt and pepper, chili powder, sauteed onions, garlic (optional) and your favorite taco mix. Add a little beef broth or beer (1 cup) and let it absorb. Drizzle the taco sauce across the nachos. Garnish the ground beef with dollops of Avocado Crema (one small ripe avocado mixed with one lime and 1 cup sour cream (in food processor combine avocado, salt, sour cream, lime juice and splash of water. Puree). Drizzle more dressing over all. Here you have not only a Taco Salad, but a Nacho addition to enjoy and everything is together.

Another great idea is Bacon Bites. Use one box thin breadsticks about ten inches in length (check with your grocery store and you may find in the pasta aisle), one package bacon and two cups brown sugar.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread the brown sugar onto a plate. Wrap the bacon starting at one end of the breadstick and overlap. Roll the bacon covered breadstick in the brown sugar, pressing to adhere. (At this point, you can refrigerate until ready to bake). Place the breadsticks on a foil lined baking sheet and bake until bacon is cooked and almost crisp, 20-25 minutes. Once done, remove sticks from baking sheet while warm or they will get stuck to the foil. Place on wax paper and let them come to room temp before serving. Now these are good!

Etc. — Use your own ideas when preparing the Taco/Nacho platter and have fun. If the brown sugar mixture is a bit too sweet for you for the Bacon Bites, add a little dijon mustard. Also, if you can’t find the breadsticks also called Artisan Baked Grissini, simply coat your bacon with the brown sugar mixture and arrange on ungreased 13 x 9 baking pan. 350 degree F for 20 minutes or so. Have fun and enjoy the games!

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