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Blonde Cucina: Super Bowl 50 is All About the Food

by and on February 06, 2016 6:00 AM
State College, PA

This year, we have the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos going head to head Sunday, Feb. 7, to see who will be the 2016 Super Bowl champions.

And, you’ve decided that you are going to have all your friends over to your place, seeing as how you got that super-large television for Christmas and, what better way to break it in than by having the ultimate Super Bowl Party?

You've made sure that you have enough seating, you know which team you’re rooting for, you got those fancy disposable football plates and napkins. Now, what will you serve?

Here's a little insight into what gets consumed on Super Bowl Sunday.

According to estimates, Americans will eat their way through 11.2 million pounds of potato chips, 8.2 million pounds of tortilla chips, 4.3 million pounds of pretzels and 3.8 million pounds of popcorn. And, the three top pizza chains will deliver an estimated 4 million pies.

One more estimate that you may or may not appreciate, depending on if you’re an employee or the boss — as many as 7 million people will call in sick the day after the Super Bowl.

Now that you've read the numbers, what do you plan on offering your hungry crowd? Don't worry, because I am here to help make your game-day chow playbook a winning one.

Here's a beverage that Carolina fans, and just about anyone else, will enjoy.


3 ounces vodka 
1 ounce blue curacao
8 ounces pineapple juice
2 ounces Sprite
Pineapple slice garnish

Stir all ingredients together except pineapple slices. Pour over ice and garnish with pineapple slice.

Now that we’ve got your party cocktail covered, what's next? In addition to the regulars — chips, pretzels, salsa, dips and so on — here's a delicious bite for both Broncos fans and anyone else who loves good food.


Start to finish: 50 minutes

Servings: 8

1 pound dried short noodles (elbow, rotini, penne, campanelle)

4 tablespoons salted butter

Salt and pepper to taste

3 cups heavy cream

3 ounces grated Romano cheese

6 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese

6 ounces shredded mozzarella

5 ounces crumbled blue cheese

1/4 cup hot or buffalo sauce

1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cook pasta to al dente, according to package instructions, and drain.

Melt butter in a large heavy saucepan over medium-low heat. Whisk in cream and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly so cream bubbles but does not burn.

Reduce heat to low and stir in cheeses until melted. Add hot or buffalo sauce and pasta, as well as additional salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.

Spoon into an ungreased 2-quart casserole dish and top with bread crumbs. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

If you want to do your part toward consuming 8.2 million pounds of tortilla chips, I have a crowd-pleasing nacho recipe you’ll make over and over.


Start to finish: 10 minutes

Servings: 6

1 bag tortilla chips

2 cups grated cheddar cheese

2 cups mozzarella

1 1/2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken

1/3 cup barbecue sauce

1 cup precooked bacon crumbles, divided

1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles

Heat oven to 450 F.

On a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, layer the chips, cheddar, mozzarella, bacon and chicken. Bake until cheese is melted, 3 to 5 minutes.

Top with the barbecue sauce, bacon crumbles and crumbled blue cheese.

At the end of the night it won’t matter who won, because everyone will have enjoyed the food so much. I promise you this, though, — you've got the MVP trophy is in the bag with these recipes.

This story was produced by the staff at the Centre County Gazette. It was re-published with permission. The Centre County Gazette is a weekly publication, available at many locations around Centre County every Thursday morning.

Ciara Semack is the owner of The Blonde Bistro in Bellefonte. She is the mother of one and a lifelong resident of Centre County. Her column appears every other week in the Gazette. Questions, suggestions and comments can be directed to [email protected]
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