Game Day Appetizers

Nachos - poet in the pantryIt probably comes as no surprise that I have no interest in football. Zero. Zilch. Nada. My parents are big fans which means I spent a lot of time in my bedroom during football season wondering why they were shouting at the TV. Sports fans–I don’t get it.

There is one good thing that comes out of living room football fanaticism–the food. It’s not a weekly part of the ritual, mostly saved for playoffs and the biggie, the Super Bowl itself, but it should be. If you’re going to get all worked up about how your quarterback screwed up or how they left the end zone open, you should at least have something tasty to enjoy in the process. Tailgaters do, and so should you!

So, in honor of couch coaches everywhere, I decided to make a few game day snacks…without watching the games. What can I say? I’m unconventional. They taste good with or without the pigskin.

Easy Nachos - poet in the pantry

Easy Nachos

1 bag tortilla chips
4-5 campari tomatoes, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
1-2 cups shredded mozzarella

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover a non-stick cookie sheet with your favorite brand of tortilla chips. Sprinkle the top with chopped tomatoes and green onions. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella (or your favorite cheese blend) on top. Bake for 10 minutes. Devour.

Layered Dip - poet in the pantry

Layered Dip

Maybe you want your chips a different way? Well here you go:

1/2 small jar salsa
4-5 oz cream cheese
1 cup +/- shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
1 bag tortilla chips or Fritos

Take a pie plate and smear cream cheese all over the bottom of it. Top with salsa or canned chili. Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes or until the cheese is completely melted. Dig in with your favorite tortilla chips or Fritos.

Layered Dip - poet in the pantry

If you’re in a hurry or only need a single serving, you can also toss the ingredients in a cereal bowl, microwave for 45 seconds or so, and stir. I actually prefer it all mixed together but I also eat this for lunch more often than I should admit.

Pepperoni Bread - poet in the pantry

Pepperoni Bread

5-Minute Artisan Bread dough
1/4-1/2 pkg pepperoni or turkey pepperoni
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 Tbsp butter, melted
cornmeal for dusting

Remember that 5-Minute Artisan Bread? If you have that fermenting in your fridge already, this is really easy. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Take out a hunk of your dough (1/3 or so) and rotate it in your hands for the standard 30-60 seconds, working the dough into a smooth ball. Then lightly flour your work surface, flour the dough ball, and roll it out into a rectangle about 12″x8″. Lay out a single layer of pepperoni (I used turkey pepperoni this time) and sprinkle mozzarella cheese over the top. Roll the rectangle along the longer edge, jelly-roll style. Pinch the seam and the ends and place it on a baking sheet dusted with cornmeal. Melt about 1 Tbsp of butter and spread it on the top. Pop it into the oven immediately for 30 minutes. Let it rest for 5 minutes after coming out of the oven, then slice and serve.

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