Game Munchies

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If you live in the Chicago area, and there is someplace you have wanted to go but it’s always too crowded, go there today at 2:00 and you will have no problem.  That’s because everyone else will be watching the Bears play the Packers.  This game is being called “Epic. All-Time. Special. Historic. Can’t miss. Once-in-a-lifetime.”  The mayors of Chicago and Green Bay made bets and the loser has to send the winner a truckload of food.  If the Bears lose, Mayor Daley has to send Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt a giant 15-pound sandwich consisting of 5 pounds of rye bread and 10 pounds of corned beef, along with pierogi, barbecued turkey legs, stuffed pretzels, and deep dish pizza, to name a few.  And if the Packers lose, Schmitt will send bear steaks, beer, a 3-pound chocolate football, and lots of cheese.  If you decide to stay home and watch the game, here’s a couple of easy munchies to make and enjoy. 

Potted Cheddar and Beer Spread

6 cups shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese (about 1-1/2 pounds)
1 can (12 ounces) beer
6 Tablespoons butter, softened
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1.  In a large bowl, combine cheese and beer.  Let stand for 30 minutes.
2.  In a food processor, blend cheese-beer mixture, butter, and remaining ingredients for 3-5 minutes or until smooth.
3.  Pack cheese into crocks or decorative airtight containers and refrigerate until ready to use.  To serve, let cheese stand a room temperature until soft enough to spread.  Serve with crackers. Makes about 5 cups.  (If you have leftovers, the spread will keep in the refrigerator for up to a month, or in the freezer up to 3 months, which means you could have it again for the Super Bowl!)

Easy Taco Munch

1/2 cup butter
1 Tablespoon taco seasoning mix
2 cups regular Fritos
2 cups pretzel sticks
2 cups corn chex
1 cup rice chex
1 cup peanuts

1.  Put butter in a glass measuring cup and microwave on high for 1 minute, or until melted.  Remove from microwave and stir in the taco seasoning mix; set aside.
2.  Combine the corn chips,  pretzels, cereals, and peanuts in a large microwave-safe baking dish.  Drizzle with the butter mixture and toss to combine.
3.  Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Open door and stir mixture with a fork.  Microwave on high another
1-1/2 to 2 minutes, until heated through.
4.  Remove from microwave with potholders and let cool before serving.  Makes about 8 cups.


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