Being that I'm in the middle of writing my Ph.D. dissertation, the idea of having a Super Bowl party couldn't have been any more tempting. Food, drinks, friends, and lots of 'em! Lucky for you all, I decided to document all of it... the paleo, the not so paleo, and the anti-paleo.
Unfortunately, it is not generally the case that an entire group of people at a party follow a paleo-based diet. So, my advice as a host, provide both, BUT practice will power. A variety of fresh veggies as well as corn chips was the selection I chose. It is worth noting that corn is actually the lesser of two evils as far as it's antigenic properties. That is, it is a better option than say whole wheat pita chips or tortilla chips which contain a plethora of gluten!
- 2lbs Pasture-fed Ground Pork
- 1 sweet onion
- 1 Apple
- 3 Organic, ripe Roma Tomatoes (sliced)
- 2 Farm fresh Eggs
- 1 Jar Organic, natural Tomato sauce
- 5 tbsp Organic Butter (or ghee, coconut oil)
~2tsp of the following (all optional):
- Italian seasoning
- Garlic Powder
- Himalayan Salt
Chop the apple and sweet onion into small pieces using a food processor. If you do not own a food processor, that is OK... using just a little more effort, grab yourself a knife and start chopping! It could be fun, for time: chop 1 apple and 1 onion- GO!
Throw the ground pork, chopped apple/onion, eggs, into a bowl and get down and dirty! Use your hands to mix the ingredients well.
Once you start to get everything pretty well mixed, sprinkle in the spices I listed above that you wish to use. Continue to mash everything together in your hands.
BALLS! When you have a nice meaty mixture oozing out between your fingers, it's time to start making the balls. I find it's easiest to pull out a sheet of wax/parchment paper, and to throw all the balls onto this before adding them individually to the crockpot.
Add some more FLAVOR. In order to make things even more potentially delicious, I decided to line the bottom of the crockpot with most of my Roma tomato slices AND slices of butter. In my mind, this would allow the flavor to start at the bottom and work its way up through the meatballs as the pot simmered for HOURS. Remember, if you are autoimmune, prone to acne, or strict paleo, butter (dairy) is not a good choice In this case, stick with coconut oil.
Next I simply added my meatballs carefully on top of one another, and topped them with the remaining slices of Roma tomatoes and butter (or coconut oil).
The final step- add the tomato sauce. Unfortunateley, I did not have any chopped garlic, so it was nice that I had a garlic tomato sauce on hand. Delish!
Once the tomato sauce has been poured in, put the lid on and set the crockpot on low for about 4hrs.
Result: Steamy balls of satisfaction...a definite Super Bowl 'GOOD!'
Sweet Potato Chips: (Because who needs the shitty potato chips they sell at the store when you have sweet potatoes!?)
- 3 Large Sweet Potatos
- 1-2Tbsp Coconut Oil
- 3-4 Tbsp Organic Butter (Optional- I also sometimes make this replacing any butter with coconut oil (so using only coconut oil); this should be done by anyone who has any indication of autoimmune disease
- 1/4 cup Pumpkin Pie Spice
First, peel and slice the sweet potatos. Throw all the slices in a pan that has already been heated to melt the coconut oil. Sprinkle the pumpkin pie spice on top, and add the butter or remaining coconut oil if you're avoiding dairy (butter IS dairy and is therefore NOT considered Paleo).
Fry the sweet potatoes on medium-high heat for 15-30min until desired softness. Enjoy.
I will also consider this a 'GOOD' Super Bowl Party selection, as it is a healthy, whole, filling, real food source of fat (the butter/oil used) and carbohydrate. Because of their carb content, sweet potatoes in general are optimal if eaten post-workout.
Some of the presentation. Notice the beer creeping in, the 'bad' and the 'ugly' are quickly approaching!
BACON Onion Dip:
Provided by my wonderful non-paleo roommate who contributed bacon to make me happy :)
- Sour Cream
- Cream Cheese
This was a delicious dip to accompany our veggie selection. Because of the inclusion of dairy, and poor quality bacon, I will have to refer to this as a 'bad' item at the Super Bowl Party.
Mexican Cheese and Beef Dip:
I am honestly not sure of all the ingredients in this, as this delicious, addictive dip was too provided by a good, non-paleo friend. The main ingredients are Velveeta cheese and ground beef. This dip tastes amazing when decorating fresh veggies (or eaten straight with a spoon- oops). Although non-paleo people look at me like I am crazy doing this, rest assured, they are much crazier using their corn chips or whatever other kind of antigenic dipping utensil than I am with my spoon! This dip contains monstrous amounts of dairy and poor quality ground beef and for that reason is a Super Bowl 'bad.'
Creamy Pesto Dip:
This dip is a combination of a store-bought, oil-based pesto mix and cream cheese. Although delicious, this dip contains dairy and encourages the consumption of bread. This a non-paleo 'bad' Super Bowl item.
Just as you were probably thinking our party wasn't THAT horrible, the desserts come into play. First, we have soft, chewy, store-bought Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (which happen to be my ultimate weakness), and a Strawberry Struedal. Streudal I could do without, but I definitely indulged in some oatmeal raisin cookies...then brought the rest into lab the next day for other people to 'get off my hands.' This was necessary!
We also had a bowl full of store-bought Trail Mix and a bag of Chex Mix. The Chex Mix is 'ugly' and as someone who generally eats a paleo-based diet, I found no reason to so much as taste this stuff- bagel chips, pretzels, mini breadsticks, no thanks. The trail mix on the other hand, although it contains peanuts and sunflower seeds (high in Omega 6 inflammatory fats), they were the lesser of 2 evils and I indulged. Trail mix just happens to be my go-to snack on nearly a daily basis, BUT I make my own using quality ingredients!
Dangerously 'Ugly', but damn good. My all time favorite beer is this one you see pictured here. I used to drink dark, coffee-like porters and nut brown ales regularly... until I found out about what wheat and gluten do to our bodies- havoc on the gut I tell you! In fact, ever since I cut beer out I would be stupid to ever go overboard drinking the stuff, as the one time I did, I was severely ill the next day (no joke)! Our bodies get used to not being exposed to the stuff, and then when we all the sudden consume gluten-containing foods again, we are able to feel exactly what it does. Trust me- no good! On this day though, this Super Bowl 2011, I was having me a scrumptious nut brown ale and enjoying every minute of it. Definitely an 'ugly' indulgence.
My (first) Plate:
Last, but not least, here is a snapshot of my first plate of the night. No bread, no pasta, no grains, BUT some serious indulging. Of course, this is not all I consumed over the course of the evening. Gluten came into play when considering my beer and oatmeal raisin cookies, in addition to both peanuts (trail mix) and dairy (variety of dips)- all of which are NOT paleo. Overall, not horrible, but definitely contains some 'good,' 'bad,' and 'ugly.'
I decided to intermittent fast until lunch (1pm) Monday because I knew my body had plenty of fuel stored up... and it did because fasting was easy!
How did you're Super Bowl feasting compare???