Football season is upon us! While hockey is undoubtedly my favorite pro sport (and that will be starting up before we know it too!), football is a close second. And that means Sunday is about to become the best day of the week! I take no shame in spending 75% of my day in front of the tv watching as many games as I can. And this season that will be all of them since we recently switched to DirecTV, and our subscription includes NFL Sunday Ticket.
I may not be itching for summer to end but fall has its own perks, doesn't it? Sundays on the couch under a blanket with the windows open and a cool breeze blowing through, a fall-scented candle burning somewhere in the house, and all football all day. It just doesn't get any better than that!
Oh wait, it does, because we didn't even talk about the food yet! Football season has the best food, and suddenly it becomes completely acceptable to make a meal out of appetizers :) All kinds of dips, wings, nachos, pretzels, the list goes on and on. And if you're still hungry when the appetizers are gone, there's pizza, burgers, chili, pulled pork, soup, and so much more. My mouth is watering just thinking about it...
I'll be sharing plenty of football party food ideas with you over the next few weeks, but today I figured we'd start with one that bridges the gap between summer and fall nicely. The local sweet corn has been abundant lately, and just I can't get enough. It's the perfect late-summer treat! As good as it is on its own, it's even more decadent in this cheesy dip. The corn is charred on the stove top, then combined with peppers, onions, jalapeno, garlic, and lots of cheese. Bake for about 10 minutes to make it all melty and gooey, then dig in with tortilla chips. Not gonna lie, this was my lunch the day I made it, and it was amazing! So good, in fact, I already have it on the menu again for this weekend. Gotta take advantage before corn season is over, right?
Cheesy Corn Dip
adpated from Emeril Lagasse (via Food Network)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
3 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 4 ears)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
3 scallions, chopped
1 jalapeno, minced (seeds and ribs removed)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons nonfat Greek yogurt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated and divided
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Add 1 tablespoon of the butter to a large skillet and set over medium to medium-high heat. When the butter has melted, add the corn, salt, and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the corn becomes dark golden brown in color. Transfer the corn to a medium bowl and set aside.
Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pan. When it's melted, add the onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions have softened slightly, about 3 minutes. Stir in the scallions, jalapeno, and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently, until the garlic is fragrant and the onions and peppers have softened, about 2 minutes. Transfer this mixture to the bowl with the corn. Stir in the mayonnaise, yogurt, cayenne, and half of the cheese until well combined.
Transfer the dip to an 8x8-inch baking dish and spread in an even layer. Top with the remaining half of the cheese. Bake for about 10-12 minutes, or until the dip is bubbly and the cheese is golden brown. Serve with tortilla chips or toasted baguette slices.