A foodie's quest to turn up the heat through strength and conditioning with whole food and a hungry mind.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Super Dip for the Super Bowl

I’m not sure, but I think something is going on this Sunday, 02/05/2012. Anyone have a clue? Oh yeah, the AFC and NFC champs are battling each other to see who will be number one in the NFL.

In the United States, Super Bowl Sunday has the second largest food consumption in a day; Thanksgiving is the first. Here are some stats found on Yummly.com for the average Super Bowl viewer:

- 1,200 calories: Amount the average Super Bowl watcher will consume while snacking.
- Football fans are expected to eat an estimated 69.6 million pounds of avocados during this year’s Super Bowl (mostly in guacamole).
- The most popular take-out and delivery items on Super Bowl Sunday are pizza, chicken wings, and sandwiches.
- It is estimated that Americans will eat 90 million pounds of chicken wings, which breaks down to 450 million individual wings!
- An astounding 14,500 tons of chips and 4,000 tons of popcorn are eaten on Super Bowl Sunday.
- Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest winter grilling day of the year.
- According to 7-Eleven stores, there is a 20% increase in the sale of antacids on the day after Super Bowl.
Do you feel like you fit into one or all of these stats? Try preparing your own snacks instead of ordering out for the game this weekend. You will save money and be healthier than most options available from pizza or other fast food joints. Since dips are a popular food choice to have while sitting in front of the TV, make a big batch of slow cooker dip or stew that is easily customized to your liking. Use frozen veggies, lentils, and/or beans along with plenty herbs and spices to create a flavorful stew that is great as is or blended to make a big batch of homemade dip.

As with most slow cooker meals, you don’t have to follow a strict recipe to get things right, just add what you think tastes good and it’s usually a guaranteed hit! I love using mostly veggies for the bulk of the dip as they are healthy, tasty, and filling without cause for concern on calories. So get out your Crock Pot and standing or immersion blender to create a dip that’s heart healthy and might score some points with your friends and family.

Not sure how to get started? Here’s a rundown of what I normally make for any occasion:

1 bag of frozen bell pepper blend
1 bag of frozen onion, green pepper, and celery blend
1 bag of frozen chopped spinach or collard greens
1 bag of frozen broccoli or broccoli and cauliflower mix
1/2 cup dry black beans soaked for 24 hours; you can use canned if needed, just drain and rinse first
1/2 cup dry white beans soaked for 24 hours; you can use canned if needed, just drain and rinse first
4 – 6 fresh crushed garlic cloves; chop them if you are not blending/pureeing everything
1 teaspoon (or more) of cayenne powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin, paprika, unsweetened cocoa powder, and chili powder
1 tablespoon natural peanut butter; trust me, it’s awesome
2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
2 tablespoons dried cilantro and oregano
Low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
Salt and pepper to taste

The easy part; add all ingredients to slow cooker, using the broth, fill only 3/4 of the way full, stir and cook on low heat for 8 - 10 hours or high heat for 4 - 6 hours. Once cooked, either ladle the contents into your blender (only filling halfway to allow for the expansion from heat) and blend until smooth, repeating until everything is blended, or use an immersion blender to puree everything in the cooker. Immersion blending is my top choice and I love having this tool. Serve with raw carrots, broccoli, celery, and whole grain crackers. Try to avoid fried corn tortilla chips if you can, there are plenty of other baked varieties or raw veggies that make great dipping utensils.

I like to be liberal with my herbs, spices, and garlic!!
Feel free to use other veggies as you please; carrots would work really well and provide great flavor too. You could also increase the amount of bell peppers for an awesome pepper and bean dip that’s worthy for the most picky eaters in your home. Experiment with the ingredients, you should always have fun in the kitchen, and see what you can come up with. Maybe use edamame and soy/teriyaki sauce for an Asian dip, or more black beans and tomatoes for a spicy Mexican dip.

Remember, although beer or other alcohol is usually a given, keep water on hand to quench your thirst and save the alcohol for less frequent gulps.

What, if anything, do you plan on having for the Super Bowl? Or, do you not care for the game and plan on watching the Puppy Bowl instead?

No comments:

Post a Comment