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The Batter Thickens: Super Bowl Snackage: Broncos Popcorn and Seahawks Cheesecakes

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Super Bowl Snackage: Broncos Popcorn and Seahawks Cheesecakes

Maybe it's just me, but when you say "Super Bowl," I don't think, "Oh yeah, that's a good game of football right there. Man, can't wait to talk about all those missed passing opportunities and first downs and TDs and missed kickoff returns. Yessir, that'll be one good game. When you combine the Broncos offense with Seahawks defense, wow, that'll be a great game to watch because the passing yardage is so much and the tackling will happen so often." (that's my imitation of every football buff ever.)

I think more along the lines of: "Yay, the Super Bowl, it'll be so much fun to sit around with my family and eat yummy snack foods while critiquing commercials and watching some football." And then I'll brainstorm for about half an hour about all the different foods I'll have the excuse to make. And honestly, I don't think I'm alone in that ;)

I bet most people  are in my field (pun-intended. Like football field) when it comes to the Super Bowl. You generally follow football and are excited for the fun of the game, the food, the experience, etc. In fact, I'd say about 95% of the people watching aren't watching because they're rooting for one of their teams. Because 48 states don't have a team playing, so that's 4% of the population who actually have a team to root for, and probably about 1% left who really really care about who wins. Everyone else just picks a side.

And depending on which side you're on, you can theme your snack table to have all their colors. If you're a Broncos fan, you can make some orange and blue peanut butter popcorn:

I had some difficulty getting the blue of the popcorn just right, because blue is a somewhat unnatural color. I will include the way I did it in the recipe, but you might be better off just melting Candiquik and putting blue food coloring in it and just coating the popcorn like you do the orange ones.

Or if you're a Seahawks fan, maybe some mini kiwi cheesecakes with blueberry sauce?

Note: the cheesecake recipe below makes a TON of batter. If you are hosting a huge party, use the whole recipe, but if you are making just enough for a small shindig or a normal size, half the recipe. For a stronger kiwi taste, double the kiwi puree, because while these cheesecakes are super green, the kiwi taste is not very strong.

Sign me up. For both. My snack table will feature colors from both sides. A smorgasbord, if you will.

And I hope yours will be a smorgasbord as well! Make both, I gaurantee you it will A) be delicious B) be a hit with all of the people at your party and C) be delicious. Have people decide which dessert to have based on who their cheering for. Or only eat one and have the other symbolically sit uneaten. As long as you make them.


Blue and Orange Peanut Butter Broncos Popcorn
Adapted from: Crazy for Crust

1 bag microwave popcorn (3.0-3.5 ounces)
8 ounces Vanilla Candiquik or white chocolate
1/4 cup (or more) peanut butter
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Blue food coloring

1. Pop popcorn in microwave according to package directions. Remove popcorn from bag and place in a large bowl. Remove all unpopped kernels! Divide popcorn into two halves.
2. Place Candiquik (or white chocolate) in a microwave safe bowl and heat for 1 minute. Stir, and add the peanut butter. Heat for about a minute more, stirring each 30 seconds. (Heating time will vary for different microwaves.) Once the peanut butter and the candy are melted together, pour over the popcorn. Stir carefully.
3. Turn popcorn out onto a large cookie sheet lined with a silpat or parchment paper. Let cool until hardened,
4. While the peanut butter popcorn is cooling, make the blue popcorn. Melt butter in the microwave, then add desired amount of blue food coloring. Take the remaining half of the popcorn and toss it in the butter. Spread out on a sheet to dry.
5. When both halves of the popcorn are cool and hardened, put together in a bowl to serve or store in an airtight container for a few days.

Mini Kiwi and Blueberry Seahawks Cheesecakes
Yields: 24 mini cheesecakes
Adapted from: Recipe 4 Living

¾ butter, melted
2 cups graham cracker crumbs

2 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 C. ricotta cheese, drained*
1 C. sour cream
1 1/2 C. granulated sugar
5 eggs
3 medium kiwis, peeled and pureed
1/2 C. all-purpose flour
2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
1 Tbs. vanilla
A couple drops green food coloring, for if you would like a stronger green color

For blueberry topping:
2 cups blueberries
1 tsp lemon juice
1 teaspoon granulated sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a medium sized mixing bowl, using a spatula or large spoon combine the graham crumbs and melted butter. Then press into the bottoms of a muffin pan lined with cupcake holders. Bake for 10 minutes, or until hardened.
3. To make filling, in a large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese, ricotta, sour cream and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in kiwi puree, flour, lime juice and vanilla. Pour into prepared crusts.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes or until the center has a slight jiggle to it. Cool on a rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before decorating.
5. To make the blueberry topping, put the blueberries, sugar, and lemon juice in a saucepan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the blueberries begin to burst and the juice comes out.

*To drain ricotta, place a fine mesh strainer over a bowl, place the cheese in the strainer and let stand for at least 1 hour or overnight in the refrigerator.

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