There are so many reasons to love the Fall. At the top of our list: the return of football. We can't wait to get together with old friends from college so we can get drunk, jump around, and shout obscenities at a bunch of kids on TV (which happens to be what we do alone watching Jersey Shore, except with more people.) During such festivities, we would much rather be a part of the action than a fixture in the kitchen. We've provided a few suggestions and recipes for low-maintenance drinks, snacks, and entrées that won't have you warming the bench.
It doesn't get much easier than putting all of the ingredients in a bowl and stirring. This also serves as a great starter recipe for improvisation. Once you've made the base, try adding cilantro or fresh tomato, or play with the heat by substituting different chiles for the jalapeño. The possibilities are endless.
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1 small onion, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced and mashed to a paste with 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 tsp fresh lime juice, or to taste
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 fresh jalapeño, seeded and minced (optional)
- 3 tsp chopped fresh coriander (optional)
Halve and pit the avocados and scoop the flesh into a bowl. Mash the avocados to desired consistency with a fork and stir in the onion, garlic paste, lime juice, cumin, chili, and coriander.
Can be made up to 2 hours in advance if you cover entire surface with plastic wrap and refrigerate. ("Leaving the avocado pit in the dip will prevent browning" is an old wives' tale.)
(Better Than Your) Guacamole
Still qualifies as easy, but with a little added flair necessary for the mother-in-laws and little-miss-whatsherfaces of the world.
- 2 large ripe avocados (about 1 1/2 pounds), halved, pitted, peeled
- 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1 ear of fresh corn
- 1 plum tomato, seeded, diced
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 1 canned chipotle chiles, finely chopped*
- 1/4 cup sour cream
Mash avocados with lime juice in medium bowl. Remove corn kernels from cob and add to avocado mixture. Stir in tomato and green onions. Combine chipotle and sour cream in small bowl; whisk to blend. Stir cream mixture into avocado mixture. Season with salt.
Beer Pulled Pork Sandwiches
For this recipe you will need a slow cooker, also commonly referred to as a Crock Pot, which is simply a popular brand. The trick to making these easy sandwiches interesting is all in the bread. Think outside the burger bun.
Pulled Pork Sandwiches
- 1 2 lb pork tenderloin (substitute: pork shoulder cut, a.k.a. "Boston Butt")
- 1 12 oz of beer (substitute: root beer)
- 1 18 oz bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce
- 8 buns, split and lightly toasted
Place the pork tenderloin in a slow cooker; pour the beer over the meat. Cover and cook on low until cooked through and the pork shreds easily, around 6 to 7 hours. (Cooking time may vary according to individual slow cooker.)
Drain well. Stir in barbecue sauce until heated throughout.
Serve over your choice of buns, lightly toasted. These are great "as is," or can be topped with thinly sliced white or red onions and dill pickles for an extra kick.
Adapted from allrecipes.com and epicurious.com.
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Two fantastic beers that pair well with the food AND have great game day names? What are the odds?
Victory Prima Pils - Pennsylvania, USA - Pilsner - 5.3 percent ABV "Heaps of hops give this pale lager a bracing, herbal bite over layers of soft and smooth malt flavor. This refreshing combination of tastes makes Prima a classy quencher in the tradition of the great pilsners of Europe" Beer Advocate: A- Rate Beer: 96/100
Ayinger Celebrator - Germany - Doppelbock - 6.7 percent ABV "A sensational, festive foam and truly extraordinary fragrance. The first taste is of mild fullness with an accompanying coffee tone, which becomes more dominant with the aftertaste. There is very little of the sweetness that is [usually associated] with doppelbock beer." Beer Advocate: A Rate Beer: 100/100