I am not what you’d call a football type of girl. As a matter of fact, when I was growing up, I made a pact with myself that I would never marry a guy who watched sports on TV. I stuck to my guns, and I couldn’t be happier.
I did grow up in a football, baseball, basketball loving house. I’ll clarify- the male half of the house loved sports. My dad was a huge fan of the Yankees, the Giants, the Warriors, and the 49ers. I think the best thing that ever happened to him (aside from us, his family) was getting to go to the Superbowl to see Joe Montana lead the team to victory against the Cincinnati Bengals.
On the day of the game, we all huddled around the TV at my aunt’s house in Menlo Park and watched intently– just in case we could see my dad. Well, I’m sure some people were actually watching the game, but as far as I was concerned my dad was a bigger hero- a bigger superstar than all of the 49ers put together.
All Photos Copyright John O’hara and Eric Luse– SF Chronicle
In January of 1982, I’d only been home from France for about a month and I remember my uncle Gordie making barbequed pork butt (which at 9, was the funniest thing ever). It tasted smoky and sweet and totally American.
Years later, we’d attend an annual superbowl party at my friend Julie Walker’s house. I remember spinach dip and popcorn and seven layer dip and oh yes, nachos.
Though, I won’t be watching the superbowl this year, I have to say there’s something about seeing all of the Superbowl food that makes me a little nostalgic. I can picture my dad, sitting on the edge of his sofa cushion- watching the game- and jumping up when his team scored. I remember hearing him and my brother cry “no no no no no!” when the other guys were up.
I remember Superbowl XXIII- my mom made snacks while my dad, my brother, and I sat in the family room watching the 9ers beat the Bengals again. I remember begging to have a beer because clearly 15 is old enough and I’m sure I would have just loved it.
So, all week as I’ve been seeing Superbowl Snacks lighting up the blogosphere, I’ve thought about my favorite football-friendly dishes with great fondness. Eventually, I broke down and made myself some super cheesy gluten-free nachos. Crispy tortilla c chips, spicy nacho cheese sauce, and black beans topped with avocado. That’s how I love my nachos and I can guarantee, my dad would have loved them too.
Nacho Average Nachos
Spicy Nacho Cheese Sauce (Gluten Free)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons superfine brown rice flour
- 1 teaspoon potato starch
- 3 cups cold low fat or nonfat milk
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon chipotle powder
- a heavy pinch of dried spicy chili powder (I used aji amarillo) –optional
- 2.5 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (about six ounces)
- salt to taste*
Black Beans with Cumin and Chipotle
- 1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
- juice of one lime
- salt to taste
- hot sauce to taste (I use Marie Sharp’s Fiery Hot Habenero YUM)
For Cheese Sauce
- Melt butter over medium low heat
- Whisk in flour and potato starch until the mixture holds together. Keep whisking for three or so minutes until the roux starts to smell nice and buttery and the flour no longer smells raw.
- Slowly pour in the cold milk, whisking all the time, until the sauce comes together. Continue cooking on medium low heat until the milk begins to simmer and turn burner to low whisk for a few minutes allowing the sauce to thicken—but not too much.
- Add the shredded cheddar, one half cup at a time, whisking into the hot milk mixture. Be sure that the cheese sauce does not simmer or boil at any point as this will result in a grainy, separated, sauce.
- Test cheese sauce on a chip and then add salt as needed.
For Black Beans
- In a small saucepan over medium low heat, add black beans, spices, and lime. Stir frequently as there is no oil to keep from sticking.
- Taste on a chip and add salt and hot sauce to taste.
Add chips to a plate, top with nacho cheese sauce, add black beans, and then any additional toppings you like. I served mine with avocado, red onion, and fresh cilantro. Eat it while it’s piping hot!
Check out these awesome Nacho Recipes