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One of the great recreational activities is an exciting and fun-filled tailgating party. It's more than just drinks at the back of an SUV or a truck; tailgating parties are a big hit at any sports event. This is where everyone gets together to celebrate the game, or maybe just for a get together where all of you can have fun, share stories and laughter.
But aside from that, no party is complete without food and drinks. Food is a very important part of tailgating. Make sure your food is in the Safe Zone. If you do not, end run will mean something completely different!
The most important thing to stress about tailgating is keeping the food at safe temperatures. That is below 40 degrees or above 140 degrees. This means ice and a food thermometer are two of your most important aspects of tailgating equipment.
Did you know that between the temperatures 40 degrees and 140 degrees, bacteria grow at the fastest rate? Therefore, the great thing to do is to make sure that you keep cooked meat to their proper temperature and you have kept cold foods under 40 degrees.
High protein foods, such as meat, eggs and milk products must be stored less than 40 degrees. Melons should be washed on the outside; cut up at home, and then stored under 40 degrees until serving. And, the food should never sit out more than two hours if you are taking “takeout” or fully cooked food to an outdoor event. In addition, make sure to keep insects especially flies to stay away from your foods.
Try to estimate how much food you’ll eat at the event. Taking home leftovers is not encouraged by experienced tailgaters. In the end, be prepared and plan.
You might want to consider some of these suggested recipes. They are just simply great and delicious, a perennial favorite of many experienced tailgaters.
For your main dish, grilled shrimp is easy to prepare.
Peel shrimp leaving tail section intact. Pour one small bottle of Italian dressing in an 8 1/2 x 11-inch pan. Place shrimp in pan. Sprinkle a splash of teriyaki sauce on each shrimp. Lightly sprinkle garlic salt across the entire pan. For extra zest, splash lemon on shrimp.
Chill in refrigerator for two - three hours to marinade, then grill for 10 minutes. Turn occasionally for browning effect. Do not overcook, as shrimp will get tough.
For you beverages, you could prepare summer time punch.
Mix 2 cups of water, ¼ cup powdered iced tea mix, 3 cups orange juice, 1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice, ¼-cup grenadine, 1 ginger ale and the raspberry sherbet and add a champagne or white wine for extra taste. This will be great drink for your party.
Finally, for your desert, try the apple peach pie. This is just easy: combine a cup of sugar, ¼ tsp of salt and 2 tbsp of flour. Then add 1 tsp of lemon juice, 1 tsp. cinnamon and the sliced apples. Add the top crust add seal around edges. Cut slits in top. Bake it at 425 degrees for 40 minutes and let it cool for 15 minutes.
Before the time has come for the party to start and your friends to arrive, you are already done preparing the foods and drinks. All you have to do is sit back relax and enjoy.
Nicola Kennedy has been organizing tailgate parties and picnics for more than 15 years.