90 minutes out from the most anticipated football game of this year and I have that terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach. I've tried to avoid thinking about this game against the top-ranked Patriots since last week's embarrassment that barely qualified as a win.
I'm not a nervous person. I don't believe rumors, or read into perilous omens in the swirls of my oatmeal, and I'm pretty optimistic by nature. But quantitative evidence that another team is better than mine gives me the willies.
And there's only one thing I can do when I'm nervous: eat. And eat I have! Two weeks ago, when watching the Saints/Lions game, I had to get up and make cookies to cut the tension that probably only existed in my own mind. Today, to prep for today's game, we're making buffalo wings and brownies, two foods that I don't even like but will ingest as my physical defense against any other negative emotions. After all, maybe that's the motivation behind our American tradition of pigging out during games (see: Serious Eats' many posts on the subject -- halelujah!).
Cold from the snow, and desperate to pass the time, I took a stab at a "Bayou Cajun Festival Winner" family recipe for Jambalaya from my vaguely-Cajun mother, via her Aunt Reeder (true story). Mom refused to give this to me for the years that I was vegetarian, for the record. What I thought was a delicious mystery of culinary engineering is actually a dead-simple recipe. It even got the thumbs-up from tough local food critic Chef Wayne. So if you're biting your nails over the 6PM game and having friends over to share the agony, you could make this to try to calm your nerves (but don't forget the beer, either).
Momma Po's Jambalaya Recipe
- 2 cups rice
- 2 cups peeled shrimp (uncooked, frozen is OK)
- 2 2lb. packs of Kielbasa (beef preferred)
- 1 large onion
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped green pepper
- 1 cup green onion
- 1 cup chopped fresh parsely
- 1.5 sticks of butter
- 2 cans beef boullion broth
Dump it all together, put it in an oven at 350, check it every 20 minutes until the rice is done.
Now I'm headed off to the grocery store to pick up a few more things to keep cookin'. My heart goes out to other nerve-racked fans today (ie, Daisy). Sigh. Go Ravens! And 49ers!