Football season is here! We dress in team colors and cheer for MSU, LSU, or our beloved Saints. For many, football is also synonymous for tailgating parties. And where there’s a tailgate open in a stadium parking lot, rest assured, there is FOOD!
Members of the McNeese State University Alumni Association are locally famous for their tailgate parties. Pat Hay, class of 1974, is a member of the Rowdy Road Wranglers. He says the group consists of five or six core families and they all take turns cooking and contributing to the pre-football game fare. Jambalaya, chili, gumbo, and beans are popular with the tailgating set. Hay is best known for his pork steaks. Like many cooks, he is reluctant to give out the recipe.
Lonnie Fisette graduated in 1971 and has been very active with the McNeese Alumni Association, serving as president in 2006-2007. He is currently on the board of directors for the Petro-Chem Booster Club. And he’s an avid tailgater who loves to cook. His specialty is black-eyed peas sauce piquant. Try this and three of his other favorite tailgating recipes and plan a parking lot party of your own!
Black-Eye Pea Sauce Piquant
4 lbs. good sausage
1 lbs. tasso
1 bell pepper
2 tsps. garlic
2 cans Dawn’s Mushroom Steak Sauce
1 small can mushrooms
½ small can tomato paste
1 can Original Rotel
1 small bottle Cajun Power
2 cans chicken broth
1 gallon black-eye peas
Cut up sausage and taso. Brown in good pot. Add onions, bell pepper, garlic and sauté until onions are clear, then add all other ingredients except black-eyed peas. Cook for about an hour, then add peas. Cook for about 2 hours. Season to taste. Goes great with cole slaw and cornbread, and of course, over rice. Recipe feeds about 10-15 people. Leftovers freeze well. You can find gallon size cans of black-eyed peas at Misse’s in Sulphur or Oasis Foods in Lake Charles.
Fried Baby Back Ribs
1 rack of baby back ribs or more depending on number of people
Gallon of peanut oil
Heavy pot for frying (black iron pot works best)
Tony's or Slap Ya Momma's seasoning
Slice ribs into individual pieces. Heat oil to 350-370 degrees. Drop in ribs and cook for 10-12 minutes. Place ribs in a large pan and season while they are right out of the fryer. Serve hot.
Makes 10 -12 servings
1 lb. premium smoked sausage cut into 1/2 inch disks
2 lbs. fresh chicken breast & thighs
2 lbs. pork cut into 1 inch pieces or cubes (Boston Butt works perfect)
1 lb. bacon cut into 3/4 inch pieces or cubes (Half jalapeno and half regular)
2 lbs. vermicelli pasta (or 1 - 16 oz. pack of fettuccini or linguine broken into 4)
4 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell peppers
4 cans chicken broth (I just use a large box)
2 cans of French onion soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can diced Rotel tomatoes
1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
1/2 cup garlic powder (I use minced garlic instead)
4 tbsp. ground black pepper
2 tbsp. Cajun seasoning mix
1 large bottle Worcestershire sauce
6 cups water (add as needed)
In Dutch oven, on medium high heat, add oil and pork. Add 2 tbsp. black pepper, Cajun seasoning mix, and 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce. Fry until meat is thoroughly brown.
Add onions and 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce.
Sauté until onions soften, add pepper and tomatoes, stir well. Continue to sauté about 5 minutes. If using fresh sausage, fry in a heavy skillet until firm, then cut into 1-2 inch lengths.
Add fresh and smoked sausage to large pot and allow to sauté another 15 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add soup and stir well for 10 minutes.
Add broth and 1/4-1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce, water, 2 tbsp. black pepper, garlic powder. Stir well and bring to a boil.
Break spaghetti into thirds and add to pot. Continue to mix while spaghetti softens, about 10 minutes.
Reduce heat to low, cover, and allow to slow boil about 15 minutes.
Turn mixture one time, checking for moistness, and add water, if needed. Turn off heat and allow to rest about 5 minutes.
Tailgating Cocktail – Fisette says they serve this drink at every tailgating party. They call it Strip and Go Naked.
4 bottles of Vodka (1.75 ml each); 12 cans frozen Pink Lemonade; 2 cases 10 oz. beer. Makes 8-10 gallons.