Its hard work being a devoted Vikings fan. Such an emotional roller coaster of HIGHS & LOWS! For the NFC Championship Game against the Saints, we cheered the Purple People Eaters on with my first two Chico recipes; Orange Blossom Brownies and Gorgonzola Au Gratin Potatoes. Not typical football food, nuh-uh, apparently I like to be different! And even though the MN Vikings lost with a devastating score of 31-28 in OT, at least the treats were TASTY and fueled our revved-up energy!
The game was very INTENSE, so the brownies, potatoes, & other snacks fulfilled our stress-eating. We accompanied them with "Vikings On A Stick," since I was excited to find the recipe online (click here for the recipe). Its the exact formula used at the Montana State Fair actually, and they were really really delicious. And, as it turns out, really really FILLING! We made ours with ground elk, veal, & pork, but really, a person could experiment with a variety of different meats. I’m sure we’ll make those again someday since the website says they're popular at Nordic gatherings, and we sure do love our theme nights! That little deep-fat fried goodness not only pays homage to our beloved Vikes, but also Travis’ Norwegian heritage. And they made us feel overly STUFFED too. I could have probably cut the recipe in half (or more) since after eating just two, we could definitely feel them sitting in our stomachs. Good to know, when we fry those lil suckers again, we should just make half a dozen instead of TWENTY-FIVE. And funny story, when I was at the store buying the ingredients, I ran into a guy wearing a Vikings hat. Upon chatting over spices & the upcoming nail-biting game, I discovered his family runs the Sons of Norway booth at the fair. Ha, I was making his grandmother’s recipe! What a small world.
The Orange Blossom Brownies were excellent, but then again, I’ve never met a bad brownie. These were unique with a slight, fresh, citrus taste to them. I used gluten-free flour, and really, no one would have ever guessed. I decided to use my grandma’s electric mixer, that has literally sat on a tucked-away shelf since I bought this house 7 years ago. I wonder what the last thing it made was. Grandma’s famous divinity fudge, perhaps? Regardless, it sure did stir better than my arms can! I bet Grandma was as thankful for that as I was. :) After last week’s playoff game where the Vikings demolished the Cowboys, Favre led the team in a funny "pants on the ground, hats to the side" chant taken from American Idol. So at the last minute I thought to write "Pants On The Ground" on the brownies and grabbed my pink Vikings hat to wear to the side. We were in full "Go Vikings" mode!
We got nearly A FOOT OF SNOW the day I made the brownies & potatoes. So after a morning of coffee with my girlfriends and an afternoon of snowshoeing with my hubby, an evening of baking was the perfect inclusion to a very wintery day. Everyone was leery about the Gorgonzola Au Gratin Potatoes having raisins mixed in, yes raisins, but it was surprisingly quite good! Well, I’ll be honest, our buddy Mikel ended up feeding his portion to the dog. But Travis & I enjoyed them! A very strong taste with the leeks & whipping cream, but delicious none the less. And I will probably make them again someday. The rich heaviness is good comfort food for a cold, snowy day. I’m eating the leftovers right now as I type, and they are so good…..
~Rating of Gorgonzola Au Gratin Potatoes: 4 stars (out of 10)
~Rating of Orange Blossom Brownies: 7 stars (out of 10)
~Quote of the day: "Life deals you a lot of lessons, some people learn from them, some people don’t." –Brett Favre, MN quarterback.
~Music while cooking: I usually have background music playing while messing around in the kitchen. Selections during these recipes; Dierks Bentley's Feel That Fire, Funk Volume 2, & Sugarland's Live On The Inside.