Last Sunday I walked into a bar at 1 pm. Two glasses of champagne, 1 beef brisket hash, 3 margaritas, and 2 wings later, I walked out at 8pm. I almost felt ashamed about spending a good day (because there won’t be too many left) cooped inside of a dark bar watching screens and checking fantasy points. Yet there was a strange sense of social fulfillment hanging with my friends all day laughing, teasing, and really feeling ownership over a team and players that honestly we have no control over.
For many, September doesn’t mark the end of summer as much as it marks the beginning of football season, aka the greatest time of the year. Rivalries once again heat up amongst friends as their teams go head to head. Men pace with the excitement of a child on Christmas as they choose their fantasy teams. Bars once again are brimming on Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays as people pour in to eat their weight in wings and cheer on their favorite teams. I am a competitive person and enjoy a good display of sportsmanship like anyone else, but there is something else that makes football special. I didn’t grow up watching football. I am no diehard fan of any team. I have no heroes in the sport. But in my formative years, I’ve noticed communal gatherings surrounding football games are what set it apart from other sports.
As I grow older (wiser) I find myself not always wanting to be in the bar scene. Mainly because for big games sometimes it is difficult to find a seat, and my legs grow weary. Also football games are long. Even with specials, 3 hours of drinks and food can get expensive, especially in New York. Oh and I actually like to hear the game and my friends but the volume in these bars can get so loud. (Yea, I’m getting old) So what’s a girl to do? Call up some friends, get comfy on my couch and make my own football feast. You can too with this
MAKE THIS MONTH:
Turkey Burger Sliders w. Goat Cheese, Sweet Potato Fries, and Crudité*
*fancy word for raw chopped veggies
What You Need:
1 pack Ground Turkey (Dark meat is more flavorful)
1 Tbs Mustard
1-2 t Cumin
Slider Buns (Unless you are gluten free like me)
Alexis Sweet Potato Fries (Cheating is ok in life sometimes, but by all means if you want to hand cut and fry from scratch more power to you)
Cucumber, Red Bell Pepper, Carrots
Hummus (Again cheat! Hummus is pretty simple but this is a weeknight meal, don’t “nobody have time for all that”)
What You Do:
1. Heat the oven and cook the fries according to the package. They should take about twenty minutes.
2. Chop half of the cilantro and add to a bowl with turkey meat, mustard, cumin, and salt. Shape into patties; it helps if you wet your hands intermittently. Turkey meat can be sticky. Let these sit for at least five minutes for flavors to meld.
3. Heat a pan with olive oil until pretty hot. Sear the turkey burgers on each side for about 3-4 minutes. Place on a baking sheet and finish in the oven. **You can use that same pan to caramelize some onions to top burgers with as well**
4. Meanwhile chop your cucumber, bell pepper, and carrot however you see fit, circles, strips…go wild! Arrange on a platter with the hummus.
5. When sliders are done remove from oven, probably about 10-15 minutes later. Place on bun and top with goat cheese.
6. Toss fries with a LIGHT coating of cinnamon and sugar when done and serve with spicy ketchup. **Easy Spicy Ketchup- 1 C ketchup, Sriracha to desired spiciness, 1Tbs brown sugar or honey**
This meal literally will take you thirty minutes to throw together, no Rachel Ray T.V magic. It’s just enough time to walk in the door and be sitting down for game time. So let’s go Jets..err um..Niners..I mean Seahawks. Run, tackle, and jump! Maybe I’ll just stick to food and leave the loyalties to the real fans.