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Win Your Super Bowl Party

Posted January 21, 2015

Photo ofWin Your Super Bowl Partyby Tender Belly

Bacon wrapped jalapeños

Super Bowl XLIX, the biggest sporting event of the year, is less than 2 weeks away. We’re expecting an epic showdown between the Patriots and the Seahawks. But epic football is not complete without epic snacks. And on Super Bowl Sunday, it’s all about eating your favorite finger-lickin’ foods, no holds barred. To help you win your Super Bowl party, we’ve compiled a list of ideas for what to eat and how to kick it, Tender Belly style. So crack open your beers, loosen your belt buckles, and get ready to chow down. First off, make it easy for yourself. We suggest cooking as much as you can in advance, so you can keep your eyes on the game instead of the oven. Most of the Tender Belly pork recipes below can be prepped the night before or thrown in a slow cooker on Sunday morning, to be ready just in time for kickoff. The Super Bowl is all about small finger foods, which make for easy snacking and keep messes to a minimum. No one likes being locked down at a table or precariously balancing a heavy plate of food on their knee. Here are some of our favorites:

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeños

We believe that everything is better wrapped in bacon, and that’s especially true for the Super Bowl. This snack is guaranteed to be crowd-pleaser. You can keep it basic and just use cream cheese, jalapeños, and bacon (RECIPE), but we suggest jazzing it up with some brown sugar, chili powder, and cheddar cheese (RECIPE). You can vary the spiciness to suite your heat-tolerance. If you and your guests prefer a milder taste, be sure to remove the seeds. You can also take some of the bite out the peppers by soaking them in cold water. The longer they soak, the milder they will be. Keep in mind that the freshness of your peppers will also affect their heat level. Jalapeños get progressively hotter as they age. Peppers with more white lines tend to be older and hotter. If you really want an extra kick, try these with Tender Belly uncured habañero bacon. Don’t forget to tuck the ends of bacon under so they don’t unravel. And keep an eye on your grill, since the bacon fat can create some pretty high flames.

Atomic Buffalo Turds

We don’t know who named these, but we promise they have nothing to do with buffalos or turds, and everything to do with delicious bacon and franks. These incredibly addicting snacks are the lesser known, but even more delicious, version of bacon-wrapped jalapeños (RECIPE)  You can substitute the mini sausages with Tender Belly franks by slicing them in half length-wise and then cutting again to fit your peppers.

Pulled Pork Anything

Pulled pork is very versatile and can be put on anything from slider buns to nachos. We also love adding pulled pork to queso dip or using it as filling for empanadas. To make it, you’ll need boneless or bone-in Tender Belly pork butt (also known as pork shoulder). Using a slow-cooker is easy and fuss-free. You’ll need to allot 6-10 hours, so this is best to start first thing in the morning (RECIPE). If you have a smoker and little extra time on your hands, then check out THIS site for preparation tips and a killer recipe. You’ll know it’s done when it easily shreds apart with a fork. If you choose to add it, go light on the BBQ sauce, so you don’t drown out that incredible pork flavor. Pairs perfectly with cole slaw.

Pork ribs

Luckily, Tender Belly pork ribs can be cooked with just about any method you choose. Grill, oven, or slow-cooker, they’ll still turn out tender and delicious. Don’t forget to remove the tough outer membrane before you begin (if it’s too slippery to grasp, try grasping it with a paper towel). Our favorite method uses the oven first, then the grill last. To cut down on time, "You can make the ribs through step 7 up to 2 days in advance. After roasting, transfer them to a large, shallow container, set aside to cool for about an hour, then cover and refrigerate" (RECIPE).  If you’re not ready to weather the cold outside, then try some oven-baked ribs (RECIPE).

Pigs in a Blanket

It’s not a party without pigs in a blanket. Take this classic snack up a notch with Tender Belly franks, cut in thirds (RECIPE). Serve with ketchup, mustard, BBQ, or any other sauce of your choice.

Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Bites

This is one of the easiest snacks you can make (RECIPE). If you like a little kick, we suggest adding 1/2-1 TSB of cayenne pepper to the sugar or using Tender Belly habañero bacon.

Chile Verde

This tasty favorite is more of a main dish, so you may want to serve this at half-time (if you’re not too busy watching Katy Perry lip sing). For this recipe, you’ll need Tender Belly pork butt or shoulder (trimmed of fat and cut into 2-inch cubes) and enough time for 2-3 hours of slow simmering. Serve over rice, with beans, or over tortillas.

That Sweet Stuff

Don’t forget about dessert. If it turns out to be a close game, you’ll want something sweet to ease your stressin' while you’re sitting on the edge of your seat. Take your boxed brownie mix up a notch with these Pecan Chocolate Chip ‘Magic’ bars (RECIPE) or some incredible Red Velvet Cheesecake Cookies (RECIPE).