The Super Bowl of inflated football foods

By on January 28, 2015

Part II: Quesadillas and sliders

Okay, I hear the mumblings: “Wayne, it’s winter, it’s been snowing, and the forecast calls for frost, frequent freeze and possible frigid feet.”

Well, if you’re reading this I’ve caught your attention and you’re most likely a griller so, let’s get grilling in winter. Why do we grill? For the best flavors, right? To step outside, gulp the fresh air, relax with our thoughts or a friend or two, and feed our forever firmware by building a fire. Added benefit: the beer stays cold and your spiked hot chocolate or Irish coffee is more appreciated.

Why let the footballers, skiers, skaters, sledders, hockey hounds and mushers have all the fun? Winter builds character. It separates the doers from the doubters, the adventurous from the amateurs the hardy from the hesitant.

This week and last we focus on football foods; tasty, easy- to-prepare snacks that attract a crowd and are sure to please. Forget Deflate Gate. No hurt feelings here. This is Inflate Grate! No belly goes hungry.

You don’t need to fly to Arizona for a satisfying Super Bowl experience. Just fire up the grill at home and invite your favorite pals!

You don’t need to fly to Arizona for a satisfying Super Bowl experience. Just fire up the grill at home and invite your favorite pals!

Quesadillas and sliders are two of the most popular apps in North America. No, they don’t fit in your phone. They do fill your mouth. And as you can smell and taste, grilling these favorites pumps up the flavor far beyond a football in Foxborough.

Take the humble slider. Just a tiny burger at most places. Not here! If you’re going to make little burgers, why not tailor them to every taste? Big burgers require more time and effort, and they fill you up quickly and predictably. Sliders can be topped, infused, and formed in custom flavors and popped into your pie hole like Whimpy when hungry.

Qué, quesadillas parrilla? Yes, quesadillas grilled! Do you love grilled chicken? How about smoky, oozing grilled cheese? Grilled peppers, maybe some onions and flatbread? Well you’re going to love grilled quesadilla, mi amigo.

GrateGrilling

 

 

Grilled quesadillas and sliders make for delicious Super Bowl snacks. Sliders also provide a great outlet for culinary creativity as you experiment with different cheeses, sauces and toppings. (Photos by Wayne Bagrowski)

Grilled quesadillas and sliders make for delicious Super Bowl snacks. Sliders also provide a great outlet for culinary creativity as you experiment with different cheeses, sauces and toppings. (Photos by Wayne Bagrowski)

 

Slider suggestions

We could go into ingredients and prep, but I’m guessing you know how to cook your best burgers. What separates sliders from big burgers is of course their size, but as mentioned above, they crave uniqueness. Here are a few suggestions to offer you and your guest’s delicious slider samples.

Top or infuse your mini-burgers with:

  • Blue cheese and toasted onions (the kind your spread on Thanksgiving vegetables);
  • American or cheddar cheese and grilled bacon, and/or grilled Canadian bacon;
  • Swiss cheese and grilled or warmed canned mushrooms;
  • Infuse or soak a few sliders in your favorite barbecue sauce, and serve with toasted onions;
  • Ditto with minced garlic, or onions or jalapenos, but probably not together;
  • Get creative with sauces. Ketchup and mustard for sure, but try Red Hot (beats Tabasco hands-down), Grey Poupon of course, warm barbecue and Worcestershire sauces, beef gravy mixed with Lancaster horse radish. Let your imagination run wild.

 

Drink suggestions

  • Malibu Coconut Rum and hot chocolate tastes like a Mounds bar
  • Malibu and hot cider tastes just like warm apple pie
  • Prepare your favorite Margarita using Malibu Coconut in place of triple sec.
  • Rumple Minze and hot chocolate goes down as a memorable peppermint patty, and talk about a great finish
  • Baileys Irish Cream and coffee is legendary. Add Irish or Bourbon whiskey, or better yet Grand Marnier, and the only reason you’ll come indoors is for a refill.

 

My Super Bowl pick?

Patriots win while people pay upwards of $6,000 for tickets while you and I have the absolute best views and freshly grilled eats seven sides of Sunday.

Wayne Bagrowski has been grilling for 30 years, often 150 days annually. An Upstate N.Y. guy who isn’t afraid of rain, cold and snow, he can be found in foul-weather gear on his deck and patio, often shovel and hat in-hand, sending smoke signals to fellow enthusiasts. Long-term wine and spirits and restaurant careers round-out his food and drink passions.

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