Monday, September 14, 2009

Easy Football Party

Sad news. Last Thursday was the official beginning of the football season. For the five months that the NFL season lasts I become a football widow. My husband loves football more than anything. Alas, I shall not see him again until February.

The only plus side to all this neglect is that we have guests over more during football season than any other time during the year. Our socializing style is pretty relaxed, so having friends over to watch the game is ideal for us.

In addition to the smaller parties we have throughout the season, every year we have a big Super Bowl party. Because my husband’s favorite team is the Steelers, this past year, for our Fourth Annual Super Bowl Party, we wanted to change things a little bit and step up our “game” some. We had a chili bar, which in addition to being very easy, was also a big hit. There’s nothing like a big bowl of chili on a cold day. Besides, it’s filling and frugal to boot!

I won’t bother to give you chili recipes, because everyone already has their favorite recipe, but I’ll tell you how to set up this easy party. We had a vegetarian chili in a small crock pot and a chili con carne in our larger crock pot, which kept them both warm and allowed people to serve themselves throughout the afternoon and evening. With the chilis, we had every accompaniment we could think of including corn bread, hotdogs, cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, onions, scallions, sour cream, saltines, and queso.

We put the crock pots of chili, all the accompaniments, plates, bowls, forks, spoons and napkins on one table. We had drinks in a cooler and cups on a table near the cooler, not with the food. Separating the food and drink at parties allows for better traffic flow. We had veggies and dip on yet another table (the coffee table) near where everyone was sitting, watching the game.

We used sports theme wrapping paper as tablecloths. This is both a frugal decoration and helps to prevent your tables from getting scratches and condensation rings. I strategically place coasters and napkins near anywhere a person could sit whenever we have people over.

For most parties, I make a dessert myself, but every year for our Super Bowl party, I buy a dozen or two of Krispy Kreme’s football shaped donuts. Who doesn’t love Krispy Kreme?

That’s it. Enough food to feed a football team but very little effort. Everything can be done in advance so I can enjoy the game, rather than serving or replenishing trays and everyone gets exactly what they want to eat. It’s a win-win and that almost never happens in the Super Bowl.

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