Super Bowl Sunday

We celebrated the Super Bowl with a slightly unconventional menu:

Stuffed turkey breast
Spice-rubbed roast chicken
Fennel salad
Spaghetti with bacon and onions
Chocolate pecan pie

The turkey breast turned out well. I stuffed it with Italian sausage and some aromatics, and then grill roasted it on the rotisserie. The chicken was even better, rubbed with a savory spice mixture that included lots of smoked paprika. The rich caramel color and assertive flavors were a big hit.

The fennel salad was simple and delicious. It included orange and grapefruit segments, shaved fennel, dried cherries, and pecorino romano cheese. The recipe called for pomegranate seeds, but I had to substitute the cherries. The dressing was a basic citrus vinaigrette.

The pasta was outstanding! I browned 8 ounces of good bacon in a large skillet, removed the bacon, and then gently sautéed a chopped onion and a little garlic until it caramelized. As the onion cooked, I boiled a pound of spaghetti in salted water. Once the pasta was cooked, I drained it and added it to the skillet, tossing the mixture together for about a minute. (NOTE- never, ever rinse cooked pasta unless the recipe specifically calls for it. The partially dissolved starches coating just-cooked pasta promote ‘sauce adhesion’. Rinsing these off makes it harder to bring pasta and condimento together into a cohesive dish.) You can add a little pasta water to thin and ‘extend’ the sauce if it is tight. I finished the dish with a little chopped parsley and more pecorino romano.

The chocolate pecan pie was from The Fresh Market, and it was predictably delicious.

Other than the pecan pie, all the recipes were taken from Mario Batali’s Italian Grill cookbook. I’m also proud to say that I brought the whole menu together in about 4 hours, including shopping.

This entry was posted in Entertaining, Football, Pasta, Rice, and Beans, Poultry, Salads. Bookmark the permalink.

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