The best Super Bowl menu ever? Fill your plate with rack of lamb, mushroom crostini, blistered shishitos, and more

For this Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta, which has the Rams facing the Patriots, the teams battle for the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

Vince said it all when he said: “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” I love Vince for that. And his favorite drink was coffee.

I’ll need that coffee, and so will you, if you’ll be hosting (or taking food to) a Super Bowl party. It may seem daunting, but I’m here to help with recipes you and your people will love.

As you look over the juicy offerings below, think about what you can do the day before.

Keep in your mind Vince’s mantra: Believe you can, and you’re halfway there. And, as always with my recipes, get your Aleppo flakes at the ready!

Rack of lamb

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This recipe brings together rack of lamb from my butcher and mint from the farmer's market. Don’t be put off by the what-seems-obvious coupling of lamb and mint. This ain't your grandma's mint jelly...

INGREDIENTS

For the lamb

  • 2 cleaned ("frenched") half-racks of lamb, approximately six ribs per rack

For the mint sauce

  • 5 cloves garlic peeled

  • 2 small shallots

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard -smooth, not grainy

  • 2 cups loosely packed mint leaves (stems removed)

About removing mint stems: It's a bit tedious to extract the leaves from the stem, but mint has a sturdier leg than, say, basil. You’ll not want that woody stem anywhere near your delicate mint leaves, nor chopped up in your sauce.

PROCEDURE

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  1. Place the garlic, shallots, Dijon mustard, and mint leaves the bowl of your food processor:

  2. Pulse until the ingredients are well-minced. Add in:

  3. 1-1/2 cup good quality olive oil

  4. 1 t. kosher salt

  5. 1/2 t. black pepper. Optionally, you can add 1/2 t. Aleppo flakes. I do. Go for it.

  6. Give the processor a few good pulses and let this darling sit for a bit.

Do a preliminary taste for seasoning.

Be careful not to over-salt the sauce at this point, which you might be tempted to do because the the crushed mint's flavor and aroma are so strong they may mask the salt's flavor.

Now, it all comes together.

  1. In your largest EuroCAST skillet (or the top of your EuroCAST double roaster), place the lamb racks, meat side up.

  2. Drizzle olive oil over and massage it well in between the ribs. Salt and pepper well.

  3. Place the ribs in a 425F oven.

  4. Roast until medium rare or a meat thermometer reads 130F degrees, about 20-25 minutes.

  5. Now is a good time to check the seasoning again on the mint sauce. Adjust as desired.

  6. After you pull these darlings out of the oven, spoon on the mint sauce, covering the meaty part of the racks, avoiding the rib bones.

  7. Let the lamb sit until well-rested, about 10 minutes.

  8. Cut between the bones, serve on a platter, and put the remaining mint sauce in a serving bowl for passing.

The lamb can be served warm, or at room temperature.

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Blistered shishito peppers

Shishitos are amazing. They’ve got a bite, yes, but they also are sweet and have a touch of smokiness. To ramp up their sweet and smoky profile, I make them this way. The Super Bowl junkies in your home will love them.

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  1. Preheat your oven to 450F.

  2. Take the handle off your EuroCAST griddle. (What a clever thing you can do with this cookware. Love it.)

  3. Take a few fistfuls of shishito peppers and toss them olive oil to coat.

  4. Salt with Kosher salt.

  5. Put them in the oven until their skins start to char and blacken, about 15 minutes.

  6. Remove and top with dried daikon, crumbled seaweed, black sesame and bonita flakes.

  7. Into the best store-bought Caesar salad dressing (hey, let’s not make your Super Bowl prep too hard), mix in a few smashed cloves of garlic and s few anchovy filets.

  8. Top everything sesame and Aleppo flakes.

Carrot Fries

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If you think this sounds “healthy” and so it won’t taste good … you don’t know me. I love great ingredients, and avoid empty calories, sure. Most of the time.

But flavor in my house is always technicolor, full of love, and unforgettable.

And these carrot fries are no exception. Get giddy with them.

  1. Toss matchstick cut carrots with olive oil, kosher salt, garlic powder, cumin seed, and Aleppo flake.

  2. Roast at 425F in your EuroCAST griddle (handle off, naturally) or skillet (handle off) until they take on a caramel/golden color, around 20 to 30 minutes.

  3. Serve with a spiky lemon sour cream and a fist full of chopped herbs.

I even threw on some chili oil cause I’m spicy that way. And I’ve got blak•label hot chili oil on hand. Your call.

Grilled sourdough topped with ricotta, mushrooms, baby kale, garlic and a fruity olive oil

You may have noticed a trend in the recipes. It’s all small bites that you can put on a plate. That’s what people want for a Super Bowl Sunday.

And this one will be a hit. I love this mushroom toast SO MUCH. This is a recipe for two to four people, so scale it up depending on the crowd.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 8 slices sourdough

  • 4 cloves peeled garlic, left whole

  • 1 1/2 cup full fat ricotta cheese

  • 4 fist fulls of assorted mushrooms (cremini, baby portobellos and — my favorite — shiitakes) broken apart and torn, NOT cut

  • 3 fistfuls of any dark green (spinach, baby kale, leaves of Swiss chard)

  • 3-4 Tablespoons unsalted butter

  • Zest from 1 lemon

  • Fruity olive oil

  • Kosher salt

  • Black pepper

  • Aleppo flake

PROCEDURE

In your Eurocast grill pan:

  1. Heat a few tablespoons olive oil — just enough to just coat the bottom of the pan. This may seem unnecessary because EuroCAST is non-stick, but a great olive oil adds terrific flavor.

  2. Add the sourdough and grill on each side until you see grill marks..

  3. Remove the toast from the pan and rub the garlic along both sides (the garlic will slip into the toast’s nooks and crannies and soften a bit)

  4. Set the toast aside on your serving platter.

  5. Without wiping out the pan, return it to the stove over medium heat.

  6. Add a bit more oil and toss in the roughly torn mushrooms.

  7. Season with salt.

  8. Let the mushrooms murmur amongst themselves in the pan a bit to soften and start browning.

  9. Add the butter and the greens, shifting the pan occasionally or stirring with a silicone spatula.

  10. Cook until the greens are wilted and the mushrooms have softened. The mushrooms will begin to caramelize on their edges.

  11. While the mushrooms and greens are doing their thing in the skillet, smear ricotta on all the toasts.

  12. When mushrooms and greens are ready, top them with the mushroom and greens.

  13. Zest over a good hearty lemon and a bit of your excellent finishing olive oil.

  14. I’d do one last smattering of Maldon sea salt and Aleppo flake.

When you’re tired of salad, this is the salad you absolutely should make

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I’m all about the salad.

And the cake.

And kale. And all greens, in fact.

And cookies … when it comes to sweets, I’m all about cookies (you should sign up for the @EuroCASTCookware Instagram feed because I do cookies there every Monday).

And rib roast. But, anyone who knows me, knows I’m about the salad. Delicious. Full of texture. Flavor. Surprises. Crunch, soft, sometimes a bit of chew. And always gorgeous.

So, in case there was any doubt that there would be a salad on my table this Super Bowl Sunday, here is what I’m fixing, within the parameters of my children’s tastes. My son and I love a good salad with everything in it. My daughter loves hers a bit more with a bit more leafy greens, and made fancy with goat’s cheese and crunchy things.

The salad of all salads

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 handfuls of arugula

  • 1 head romaine lettuce, shredded on the bias

  • 1/2 head radicchio, roughly chopped

  • 2 heads endive slivered

  • 1 golden apple, cored and roughly chopped

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and diced

  • 1/2 cup pea pods, roughly chopped

  • 3 shallots, sliced wafer-thin on a mandolin

  • 4 radishes, sliced water thin on a mandolin

  • 5 oz. crumbled goat’s cheese (for my daughter especially)

  • 1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts-or pinenuts,or pecans, or almonds (here are my daughter’s crunch things)

PROCEDURE

On a large platter:

  1. Toss and spread the greens first

  2. Add the chopped vegetables

  3. Sprinkle chunks of the goat’s cheese

  4. Chop and sprinkle nuts

  5. It’s the Super Bowl, so add edible flowers on top

Wickedly good dressiNg ideas

If you make salads like mine, you’ll want to match them with eye-openingly terrific dressings.

I got you covered with these two options. Grab the one you love and go!

Anchovy dressing

Blend until chunky in a blender:

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

  • Dash of kosher salt

  • 3-10 anchovies, depending on how much anchovy you want

  • Hand full of chopped flat leaf parsley

Once these ingredients are incorporated and while still chunky, with the blender still running, drizzle in 1/2 cup excellent-quality olive oil until well-emulsified.

Add some ground black pepper to finish. BOOM you made an amazing salad dressing.

Put in a bowl, add a spoon, and place next to the salad platter, so people can drizzle it on their plate as they see fit. (I might drizzle it on the mushroom toast, too, but I’m crazy that way.)

Simple balsamic dressing

This is also wicked good for this salad. It’s simple, delicious, and perhaps friendlier for your guests who may not have gotten anchovy religion yet. (Give them time. Everyone arrives at anchovy heaven eventually.)

  1. Drizzle the whole salad with excellent quality olive oil.

  2. Toss well to coat.

  3. Season with Maldon or Kosher salt.

  4. Toss again to incorporate.

  5. Lay it all on the platter.

  6. Drizzle with well-aged balsamic vinegar.

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Paul WardComment