A Fave Super Bowl Recipe
Super Bowl is right around the corner!
We have a party every year. I don't usually manage to watch all of the game (sometimes I watch almost none of it), but I have an NFL-fan husband. Better still, the two of us together love to cook and entertain. Super Bowl is the perfect opportunity for us to share our love of good food with good friends, so we always throw a party. Last year, we had 67 guests crammed into our entertainment room and our "buffet room" (which spends the rest of the year as the library and LEGO room). Some of our friends actually come for the game, but many come strictly for the fabulous company, the funny commercials, and the fantastic food.
Our buffet includes one main; whether that's ribs, pulled pork, or this year's plans for a delightfully chunky chilli con carne. And then there's the rest of our regular treats, like cheesy bacon French bread, brownies, bean dip, teriyaki beef skewers, smoked devilled eggs, and taco cheesecake.
What? You've never heard of a savoury cheesecake?
Let's fix that.
Think of an amazing, silky cheese ball that you bake like a cheesecake and serve up with crackers. Something exploding with flavour.
Taco Cheesecake is gorgeous, it tastes amazing, and it's a novelty that usually gets comments from anyone who's new to our Super Bowl party. Bonus for celiac friends - it's gluten free, provided you double check that you're using a gf taco seasoning.
I originally found the recipe on the old "Recipezaar" website, which became Food.com, which became Genius Kitchen.... I don't really use the site anymore, but I have fond memories of looking for the best rated recipes to try at home. This recipe has undergone a few tweaks over the 13 or so years I've been making it. I'll happily share my recipe, and then I'd better make sure I've got all the ingredients, because this thing goes in the oven tomorrow. It's absolutely best to let the flavours develop for a day or two before serving.
1/4 cup cornmeal
3 8-oz packages cream cheese, softened
1 Envelope spicy Taco Seasoning
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup of your favourite salsa
1/4 c finely chopped chives or green onion tops
1 1/2 cup Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 4-oz can diced green chilies
1/2 cup black olives, chopped
Preheat your oven to 350. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9 inch springform pan and coat with cornmeal. Beat cream cheese until completely smooth. Add taco seasoning, sour cream and salsa. Bean in eggs, one at a time, until just mixed. Stir in the shredded cheeses, chilies and olives. Pour gently over cornmeal and smooth out the top.
Place the pan on a baking sheet (using the hot water bath method if you wish). Bake for 30-35 minutes or until centre is almost set but still jiggles a bit. Cool to room temperature and run a knife around the outside of the cheesecake. Cover and refrigerate overnight - the best flavour develops when the flavours have about 24 hours to come together.
Garnish wish sour cream (I often use a piping bag to make it pretty), and your choice of olives, jalapenos, chilies, cherry tomatoes, green onions or chives... you get the idea. Be creative and have fun.
Serve with crackers - but don't be surprised if people just eat it with a fork.
Oh! And if you should have leftovers, you can put it in the freezer, and then just put it in the food processor with some sour cream to turn it into a chip dip down the road.