by Kate Heyhoe
One large steamy, dreamy pot pie can feed a room full of armchair quarterbacks with little effort from the kitchen coach. Here's your game plan: prepare the filling the day before and refrigerate in a rectangular baking dish. On the day of kick-off, take another short cut by topping the pot pie with frozen puff pastry instead of homemade pastry. To add a festive look, cut excess pastry into shapes as described in my recipe for Playing Field Pot Pie, complete with puffy football and 10-yard lines.
As a variation on pot pies, try a hearty homemade winter vegetable soup, baked in individual oven-proof bowls (or one large tureen) under a puff pastry crust. Make the soup itself a day in advance too, as you need to let the soup cool before adding the pastry, which won't rise properly when placed over a hot mixture. "Easy as 1, 2, 3 Sensational Soups" features a Country Vegetable Soup recipe that any cook—in or out of training—can make.
What to serve with your puffy pot pie or soup? Crunchy radishes, wedges of sharp cheddar cheese, and garlic bread are all great sideline treats, while thick slices of summer sausage or kosher salami round out the vegetable soup for meat eaters.
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This page created January 1999
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