Now You're Cooking With Steel

Tailgating for Steelers games is serious business. And it calls for seriously good food, often made over a charcoal grill with a beer in one hand and basting brush in the other. Here are our favorite fan-tested tailgating recipes sure to take the chill out of your car-side celebration.




Photo by Laura Petrilla

Pork Ribs on the Grill

1 rack pork ribs
1 cup beer
1/2 cup dry pork rub
Barbecue sauce to taste (Sweet Baby Rays is best)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pour beer into large baking pan. Massage pork rub into ribs on all sides. Baste ribs sparingly with barbecue sauce. Place ribs into the pan and cover it tightly with foil. Place into the oven, mid-rack. Cook for 1 1/2 hours. Transport ribs to tailgate. Preheat grill to low. Place ribs on the top rack and baste with more barbecue sauce. Rotate every 15 to 20 minutes for another 45 minutes or until very tender.
 


Black Bean Chili

1/4 cup olive oil
1 pound lean ground beef
2 cups chopped onions
6 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons dried cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 can black beans, liquid reserved
1 16-ounce can tomato sauce
Sour cream and cheddar cheese for garnish

Brown the meat in a 6-8 quart pot. Drain the fat in a colander, then place meat back in pot over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are soft, about 10 minutes. Add spices and stir to combine. Add beans, 1/2 cup reserved bean liquid and tomato sauce. Bring chili to a boil, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with sour cream and cheddar cheese and serve.
 


Broiled and Grilled Smashed Redskin Potatoes

3 pounds small redskin potatoes, cleaned
1/3 cup oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Herbes de Provence
Chopped fresh parsley

Boil the potatoes in salted water until they are fork-tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and cool. Flatten each potato using the palm of your hand. Once you are done with this step, you can store the potatoes in the refrigerator for up to three days. When you are ready to prepare them, preheat the grill. In a small bowl, whisk the oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper and herbes de Provence. Brush the potatoes with the dressing and sprinkle with more salt. Grill the potatoes over a medium-hot fire until crisp. Serve.
 


Hot Sausage Soup
Recipe courtesy Chris Fennimore, WQED

1 1/2 pounds Hot Italian sausage
1 large onion
1 green pepper
1 red pepper
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 28 ounce can water
4 cloves garlic
salt & pepper
bay leaf
2 15 ounce cans cannellini beans
1 bunch greens (escarole, mustard, kale, etc.)

Over medium high heat, sauté the sausage in one-half cup water in a large sauce pot until the water dissolves and the sausage is browned on all sides. While they are frying, pierce the sausage in several places with a fork to release some of the fat. Remove the sausage and cut into one-half inch rounds. Chop the onion and peppers into one-half inch chunks and fry in the same pan until they are tender. Put the sausage rounds back in the pot and use a food mill to strain the crushed tomatoes into the pot. Add 1 can of water and the garlic cloves and bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer. Cook uncovered for about 1 and one-half hours. Add one can of the beans, drained and rinsed. Puree the other can of beans and add to the soup along with the greens, washed and chopped into bite-size pieces. Simmer for another 15 minutes until the greens are tender and serve with hunks of crusty bread. It's also nice to sprinkle each serving with a generous helping of grated Romano cheese.
 


Sausage Rolls
Recipe courtesy Chris Fennimore, WQED

1 batch of pizza dough (or frozen bread dough)
1-1/2 pounds ground pork
1 tablespoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated provolone cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes (optional)
paprika (optional)

Sauté the ground pork until it is well browned. Drain excess fat if necessary. Allow to cool slightly then add the fennel seeds, spices and cheeses. Cut the dough into bun-size pieces. Flatten each piece into a roughly round shape and top with 2 tablespoons of the meat/cheese mixture. Fold the bottom edge toward the middle, tuck in the two sides and continue to roll up until you have enclosed the mixture. Pinch the seam together and place seam side down on a greased or parchment covered baking sheet. Allow to rise for about ? hour. Brush gently with olive oil and mark with a sprinkling of paprika if you have included the hot pepper flakes. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Pizza Dough:
1 1/4 cups warm water
1 teaspoon yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cups flour

Dissolve the sugar and yeast in the warm water and allow to puff up. Mix the salt with the flour then add the yeast mixture and oil. Mix by hand, in stand mixer or food processor until a smooth dough is formed. Add a little more flour one teaspoon at a time if the dough is sticky. Let rest for one hour before shaping.

 

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