Looking forward to Sunday and Super Bowl 2014!

As I start a new year with “Tailgating Through The South,”  I think about college football, pro football and decide to connect the 2.

Tailgating is an American pastime.  Going to football games and tailgating with friends and family will always be a part of our psyches.  But what about the millions of football fans who don’t attend games and choose to watch their favorite teams on TV?

I believe tailgating can be accomplished anywhere;  on a college campus, at a pro stadium, or in the homes of fans.  It’s all about the people, the gathering of family and friends. It’s about the food and the tradition of sharing meals.  It’s about the passion for favorite schools or  teams.

Wherever you watch the Big Game, New York (freezing) or at home (warm)  or at a friend’s Super Bowl Party,  the recipes and ideas below  are meant for sharing and enjoying.

When I first started thinking about recipes for the Super Bowl game, I wanted to tie them in with my “Tailgating Though The South” series, which is about college football.

I decided to develop recipes that had a tie in with the two quarterbacks and their college teams.

Peyton Manning- Denver Broncos- University of Tennessee

My heart is with Tennessee.  I will root for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.

So here’s to Old Tennessee and Peyton Manning.

During my college years at the University of Tennessee the place for hot deli sandwiches was Sam & Andy’s on The Strip.

Sam & Andy's Deli Knoxville Tennessee photo by gate21

I always ordered  Turkey & Smoked Cheddar Cheese on long white with dijon mustard.  Sounds boring.   Sam & Andy’s made subs differently borrowing the Krystal idea of steamed burgers.  They steamed the deli sandwiches and started a new, wonderful tradition in Knoxville.

My Tennessee tailgating version of the famous Sam & Andy’s steamed subs.

Tennessee Sam & Andy's deli-slider style photo by Kathy Miller

Kathy’s Turkey & Smoked Cheddar Cheese Sliders ala Sam & Andy’s

12 slider buns or 24 mini party rolls

1 pound turkey, sliced

8 ounces smoked cheddar cheese, sliced

Dijon mustard

Slice rolls.  Layer turkey and smoked cheddar cheese on bottom half of rolls.  Spread mustard on top half of rolls and place on top.  Wrap in foil.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Transfer to carryall with warm hot packs.  I use Pyrex Portables.

Kathy's Tennessee Sliders at tailgate with Pyrex Portables to keep warm photo by Kathy Miller

 The original Sam & Andy’s on the strip in Knoxville has closed.  The tradition continues at their West and Fountain City locations.  If you haven’t tasted a Sam & Andy’s steamed sandwich put this on your TO DO list.

Sam & Andy's West Knoxville Tennessee photo by Kelly Hawkins via Kathy Miller

Russell Wilson-Seattle Seahawks- North Carolina  State University and The University of Wisconsin

Having several NC State nieces and nephews means I follow NC State football.  Russell Wilson began his college football career at NC State before transferring his senior year to the University of  Wisconsin.

North Carolina State University photo by Kathy Miller

Anyone who knows anything about North Carolina BBQ knows it is in the sauce.  North Carolina sauce is thin and very vinegary with  cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes for heat.

Since it is winter time and cold in most places I have chosen the slow cooker method for preparing the meat.  You won’t have to bundle up to cook the meat outdoors.

Use a boneless or  bone in pork shoulder.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Cover with 1-2 cups vinegar, either a cider or white vinegar.  Cook on low for 8-12 hours, depending on weight of the meat.  After meat is done shred the pork and return it to the slow cooker.

Shredded Pork Shoulder NC Style BBQ photo by Kathy Miller

Add brown sugar, cayenne pepper, hot sauce and crushed red pepper flakes to taste to vinegar liquid.  Heat until ready to serve.

I topped the BBQ sandwich with my cole slaw (cabbage, green pepper, celery seed, red wine vinegar with a touch of mayonnaise) to cut the spicy heat.

I also made a guacamole with orange (liked the Denver orange connection) instead of lemon or lime.  I topped the slaw with this Guacamole.  Very different but interesting!

North Carolina Barbecue with cole slaw and orange guacamole photo by Kathy Miller

For all of the Wisconsin fans out there who enjoyed Russell Wilson’s senior year, I am including recipes to celebrate Wisconsin’s German heritage.  I devised this one using food important to Wisconsin cuisine.  Bratwurst, mustard, pretzels, cheese and of course beer.

Grilled Brats On Pretzel Bread Sub Rolls Drizzled with Beer Cheese Sauce

First Begin with Pretzel Rolls

Pretzel Bread photo by Kathy Miller

6 bratwurst

2 bottles or cans of beer

6 pretzel rolls

Simmer brats in beer on stovetop turning occasionally, 15 minutes per side.  Set aside until ready to grill.  Grill brats 10 – 15 minutes until nicely charred.

Slice pretzel rolls.  Serve brats in rolls ala hot dog style.  Drizzle with warm beer cheese spread.

Brats with Warm Beer Cheese Drizzle on Pretzel Roll photo by Kathy Miller


I made this Beer Cheese Spread for pregame activities.


2 pounds sharp cheddar cheese, room temperature

2 cloves garlic

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon dry mustard

Tabasco, to taste

1/2 bottle dark beer

1 teaspoon salt

 Cut the cheese into cubes and place in a food processor. Process until smooth. Add garlic, worcestershire, mustard, and Tabasco. Blend well. Add the beer, a little at a time, while continuing to beat the cheese, until the mixture is a good and firm. Stir in the salt, and refrigerate. Serve on small slices of rye or pumpernickel bread or crackers.

Beer Cheese Spread -courtesy Bill Bunning for my Tailgating Through The SEC series.

This Beer Cheese Spread makes a large quantity.

When making the spread grate some of the cheese and toss with cornstarch.  Using the same  ingredients  adjust quantities and add milk and beer.  Whisk sauce over low heat until steaming.  Add cheese tossed with cornstarch and stir until melted.  Drizzle over Brats and serve extra as a dipping sauce.

Beer Brats with Warm Beer and Cheese Dipping Sauce photo by Kathy Miller

Stay tuned tomorrow for a few Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks recipes.

Brats on Pretzel Roll drizzled with warm beer and cheese spread photo by Kathy Miller

Watch for upcoming stories from my tailgating travels.  I welcome your comments, recipes and any inside information on your favorite tailgating spots.

Come celebrate with me.  I’ll save you a seat at the table.



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