The Philadelphia Eagles are the Super Bowl Champions until Sunday, when either the New England Patriots or Los Angeles Rams will claim the Lombardi trophy this year. As a lifelong Birds fan, watching my team win Super Bowl LII was one of the best moments of my life (yes, really). I can barely remember what food I was eating during the game because it didn’t really matter. Since my only objective for the game this year is to see Tom Brady disgraced by an underdog opponent for the second year in a row, I can occupy myself with some game day recipes. It doesn’t require as much focus as collectively holding my breath with the entire Delaware Valley.
There are several standards when it comes to game day foods- buffalo wings, dip, and chili. These are tried and true favorites that even the most inexperienced cook can execute. Have you really ever had bad buffalo anything? Or a chili so wretched that you dare not ladle it? Even cafeteria chili isn’t THAT bad. The point I’m trying to make here is don’t try to be some kind of culinary hero. You don’t need truffles or ras el hanout or kimchi for the big game; just make chili.
Season 1 Episode 5 of Food Network’s The Kitchen is titled “The Big Game” and features recipes for two dips, a giant sandwich, boozy punch, and chili. We selected chili because it is usually affordable, feeds a large crowd with minimal effort, and as a 30 year old human, Leanna needed to reach this milestone ASAP.
The amount of onions that needed to be chopped for this recipe automatically makes it slightly challenging. For anyone who has watched a quick YouTube tutorial, chopping an onion isn’t a difficult task. The hard part is the crying. I know it sounds cliche, but I had to take breaks to wipe the tears from my eyes. The recipe calls for two large onions, which doesn’t seem like a lot at all, but they really got to me. Maybe my onions were defective? Something potent was going on, so if you’re new to the kitchen, do a quick search of how not to cry while chopping onions. None of the methods will actually work, but it feels better to try. Aside from that, it was your standard chili recipe- brown the meat, add aromatics, spice it up, and then simmer with some tomato product until it reduces.
As we covered in the video, I went to a real butcher shop to get the meat. It was a Brady Bunch moment for me. This was not some cheap pink slime from the local mega grocer, this was real, freshly ground meat. As every older person likes to remind you, “You get what you pay for.” I got three pounds of a beef, veal, and pork mix, totaling about $16. It’s actually not that bad considering the recipe would feed eight people generously. The rest of the ingredients and toppings were very affordable, and you might even have most them on hand.
We invited Richie and Shannon over to test out the chili because most of the time you aren’t going to be cooking chili for one or two people, but we also thought it would be good to have four different sets of taste buds on hand to give a nice cross section of the population. Overall, everyone liked the chili, but no one loved it. It seemed really watery to all four of us. Leanna thought it was too hot, I thought it needed some sweetness in the background, Shannon thought it needed all the garnishes, and Richie was happy to be eating. Cut the amount of liquid if you are going to test this recipe at home.
- Made a generous batch for a crowd
- Super Bowl LII
- Too soupy
- Needed more oomph
- Tom Brady