Cookin’ with no dough

Jan 312007
Authors: Liz Sunshine

I have a confession to make: My idea of a good Super Bowl Sunday is good food, commercials and friends. Frankly I couldn’t care less who is playing. Because of this American faux pas I have asked Mike Donovan, Collegian sports editor and friend, to help me out.

There are many different ways for people to celebrate this particular Sunday. Some spend it alone or with just a few people. These are generally self-proclaimed major annoyances during a game. You know the type – yelling at the TV, throwing things if their team is doing poorly and known for causing a general ruckus.

I actually prefer to “watch the game” with a large group. Ever since the Broncos went to the Super Bowl – and won – in 1997, my family has gotten together with friends and engorged ourselves on an unhealthy spread of food while we watched two teams play that most people don’t care about until about two weeks prior.

Originally this was a potluck feast with a selection ranging from the always-tasty seven-layer dip to the generally avoided tiny bowl of three-bean salad. After two consecutive years of Bronco wins, leftover three-bean salad and an all-around good time, the group morphed and so did the food.

Salads have been phased out for more artery clogging foods. Instead of sharing recipes for what the group is having this year, which by the way is a deep-fried turkey (fodder for a different column), I decided to go with some classics instead. Hot wings, seven-layer dip and bratwurst topped my list as far as standards went.

I love hot wings – actually, I love all spicy foods. My problem is if you remember from last semester, they don’t love me back. Because of my apparently permanent problem with heartburn, my hot wings aren’t about the heat but instead about the flavor. I mix my favorite hot sauce with about half as much melted butter, add Cheyenne pepper, garlic salt and black pepper and toss that with my wings. After thirty minutes in the oven they are cooked perfectly with juicy meat in the middle and a flavorful kick on the skin.

The reason seven-layer dip works so well is there are so many combinations that there’s no wrong answer. Some dips have olives, some introduce taco meat, my tendency is to keep my layers vegetarian for the sake of my friends who aren’t carnivores. Because of human error the dip I made this week actually only had six layers – the olives got left behind – but the dip still tasted great.

Since bratwurst is generally made with pork this was actually my first time cooking it. I picked up pre-cooked beef brats and just followed the instructions on the package with a few adjustments. The only instruction was to stick the brats in a half-inch of hot water and let them warm for ten minutes. Instead I poured a half-inch of my favorite beer in the pan and cut up an onion to toss in as well and let that heat for ten minutes. The result was not only tasty but filling as well.

Whether you are a Superfan or part of the Indy Blue Crew enjoy the Super Bowl weekend and indulge in some heart attack-inducing food.

L’Chaim and B’Tay Avon (To Life and Eat Well).

Staff writer Liz Sunshine can be reached at



Seven Layer Dip

1 can vegetarian refried beans

2 cups guacamole

1/4 cup chopped jalapenos

1 cup sour cream

1/4 cup sliced black olives

2 cups shredded cheese

1 whole tomato chopped

Layer each ingredient in a bowl as listed and serve with your favorite tortilla chips.

Hot Wings

1/2 cup butter

1 1/2 cups favorite hot sauce

2 pounds chicken wings (this can be adjusted according to amount needed)

Cheyenne pepper, garlic salt and black pepper all to taste

Melt butter and combine with hot sauce. Pour over chicken wings and toss to coat. Season to taste. Cook in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes and enjoy.

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