Super Bowl Dinner Party

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Football may be a rough sport, but there’s no reason you can’t throw a civilized party while you watch the big game. Follow these tips for an elegant Super Bowl affair.

(FeatureSource) Your favorite NFL team didn’t make the playoffs. Or maybe you don’t have a favorite team. Or perhaps you don’t even know the difference between a corner blitz and a shotgun formation.

It makes no difference. You can still enjoy Super Bowl Sunday by making the game the centerpiece of a dinner party.

“You can serve something beyond the usual, ho-hum chips and hot dogs,” says Karen Brown, author of “The Dinner Party Cookbook” (Meadowbrook Press).

“I’m not saying that you should break out the tuxedo,” Brown says. “But why not make the party more memorable?”

Brown suggests sending out invitations on stationery adorned with football images or in the colors of the competing teams. Ask your guests to dress in NFL replica jerseys or in the garb of their collegiate alma mater.

Before the guests arrive, decorate your house with pennants, pompoms and toy footballs. On the main table, nestle a real football amidst mums festooned with flowing ribbons and miniature NFL figures.

Once guests show up, put on some college football songs. Or organize a football pool with token bets. Your guests should be getting the impression that this party is far beyond the routine gather-round-the-tube event.

If there is any doubt about the party’s uniqueness, it will vanish when you reveal the appetizers. Brown suggests warm crab dip with pita chips, offered with Bloody Marys. An ideal second course is green beans and potatoes with a light vinaigrette.

Shortly after the game begins, serve the main course: beef tenderloin on rolls. Guests who were expecting bland burgers will be overjoyed. A nice red wine, like a Merlot, goes perfectly with the meat.

As the game enters its final quarter, present your guests with dessert. Caramel brownies complement the feast and satiate your guests.

“Regardless of who wins the game, your guests will have nothing but praise for your exceptional taste,” Brown says. “And you will have succeeded in throwing a Super Bowl party that is unique and enjoyable to die-hard fan and sports novice alike.”

Touchdown!