Culinary no-no #598


Next Sunday…

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There are countless snack and food ideas for the big game. Some are great. Others? Not so much.

We’ll cover some that fall in the no-no category and pass along some alternatives, too.

Let’s begin with this scrumptious appetizer.

7 Layer Dip! When you're feeding a large crowd, nothing beats the presentation (and the utility!) of a 7 layer dip. The layers work their magic to create an appetizer that will keep your guests eating their way to their favorite flavors. |

Seven Layer Fiesta Dip

You’ve got your refried beans, sour cream, taco seasoning, shredded Cheddar cheese, chopped tomatoes, sliced green onions, sliced black olives, and of course, tortilla chips.

The dip: a definite yes-yes.

One website suggested that instead of tortilla chips you could substitute Ritz crackers, pretzels, saltine, or wheat thins.

No, no, no, no, especially that last one.

Here’s a thought I discovered online. There’s no doubt the seven-layer dip is tasty as well as a very nice presentation. But scoop out a few helpings and the dip doesn’t look as inviting. The spoon used to scoop loses its efficiency. Not if you serve these.

Mini seven-layer dips

Go mini. The recipe is here.

A seven-layer dip is the 5th most popular Super Bowl party item according to the Daily Meal.

At # 4 on their list…

Image may contain: pizza and food

The above has no place at a Super Bowl party.

USA TODAY writes:

Sorry, but regular pizza as we know it isn’t going to make the cut. 

Agreed. Back to USA TODAY:

However, some restaurants have started getting with the times and have gluten-free and vegan pizza options.

You could also alter any pizza you order to make it vegan — just skip the cheese.

THAT is unspeakable. Sacrilegious. Communistic.

What about burgers? You see them often pictured at Super Bowl parties. Not a bad idea at all. Quite adventurous, though.

I repeat. Go mini.

Again, from the USA TODAY:

Unless the sliders at your friend’s soiree are made with low-carb, gluten-free, no-grain buns and have veggies instead of meat, they’re not friendly for any diet.

I say,  so what! They even recommend getting rid of the bun altogether.

I don’t want a meatless, bun-free burger, period!

Give me the Mini Mac Burgers or French Dip Sliders with details and recipes found on the Detroit Free Press.

And why isn’t what I’m about to share a Super Bowl party staple, at least here in Wisconsin? Never, ever mentioned or suggested.

A perfect Super Bowl addition to the snack table. A true delight and a vegan nightmare!

One more.

In February of 2016 Tulane University released a study with the following title:

Success Is Something to Sneeze At: Influenza Mortality in Cities that Participate in the Super Bowl

From the study:

Using county-level Vital Statistics of the United States data from 1974 to 2009, we employ a differences-in-differences framework comparing influenza mortality rates in Bowl-participating counties to nonparticipants. We estimate having a local team in the Super Bowl caused an 18 percent increase in influenza deaths for the population over age 65. Results are most pronounced in years when the dominant influenza strain is more virulent, or when the Super Bowl occurs closer to the peak of influenza season. We find no impacts on influenza mortality in hosting cities. Our findings suggest mitigating transmission at gatherings related to large spectator events could have substantial returns for public health.

Influenza is an infectious disease that spreads by airborne droplets with an approximate travel radius of 6 feet, making close human contact an important infection vector (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2012).

In sum, we present evidence influenza mortality increases in cities with NFL teams during successful postseason play.  If a major contributor to increased influenza spread is local gatherings for watching games, a simple policy solution is to increase awareness of influenza transmission vectors during times of sports-related gatherings. Reminding people to wash their hands and avoid sharing drinks or food at parties during the height of influenza season, especially if they have high amounts of contact with vulnerable populations, could have large social returns.

The lead author of the study was Charles Stoecker.

Okay. No the flu is nothing to joke about. People die from it, and yet despite the years and years of data this all sounds a bit crazy.

And that study came out in 2016. Would love to see a follow-up as to the accuracy that the Super Bowl kills.

Here’s the deal. Check out any recent articles about recommended Super Bowl party servings and you get a lecture, an instruction to stay away from specific items because they’re not healthy.

I say BS!

Don’t tell me how enjoy a PARTY!

Yes, it’s a party, a celebration, at the dreary end of January and beginning of February.  If you absolutely must count calories you probably should just stay home and not be a downer at a house full of fans looking to have fun!


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