Northwest NEWS

October 18, 1999

Home & Garden

Dining In: Fall's the time for tailgate parties

   Whether you're a Husky, Cougar, or Seahawk fan, it's time to fire up the grill and host a tailgate party to celebrate the big game. As much fun as tailgating is, the parking lot outside a football stadium is not an ideal kitchen, so do as much preparation as possible before leaving for the game.

   Cook everything except the pork loin before you leave. If you want to serve food warm, keep it in an insulated cooler lined with aluminum foil. A hot soup stored in a thermos is a great warm "starter."

roast

Cajun Pork Loin Roast

   2 lb. boneless pork roast
   3 Tbsp. paprika
   1/2 tsp. red pepper
   1 Tbsp. garlic powder
   2 tsp. oregano
   2 tsp. thyme
   1/2 tsp. salt
   1/2 tsp. white pepper, ground
   1/2 tsp. cumin
   1/4 tsp. nutmeg

   Combine all seasonings and rub well over all surfaces of roast. Roast should be cooked over indirect heat, with the pork placed on the portion of the grill not directly over the heat source. A boneless loin will cook to perfection in about 45 minutes to an hour, allowing time for pre-game kibbitzing. Grill over medium-hot coals, turning occasionally, for 15-20 minutes, until inserted thermometer reads 155-160 degrees. Pork is done when there is still a hint of pink in the center. Let it rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serve in sandwich buns with Creole mustard, mayonnaise, or horseradish sauce. Makes 6 servings.

Smoky Pasta and Bean Soup

   6 slices lean, smoked bacon, diced
   1 small onion, finely chopped
   1 rib celery, finely chopped
   1 medium carrot, peeled and grated
   2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
   1/8 tsp. crushed hot red pepper
   2 c. canned crushed tomatoes
   2-1/2 cups drained canned white beans
   6 c. chicken broth
   3/4 cup macaroni or other small pasta shape
   Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional

   In a large deep skillet, sauté bacon until some fat is rendered; add onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and red pepper to skillet and sauté until vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, cook and stir occasionally for 10 minutes. Stir in beans; add broth and bring to a gentle boil. Add macaroni and continue cooking until pasta is tender, but still firm, about 15 minutes. Pour into thermos. Makes 8 servings.

Football Franks

   1 c. ketchup
   1 can (8 oz.) crushed pineapple in juice, undrained
   1/2 c. grape jelly
   1 to 2 Tbsp. chopped jalapeno peppers
   1 lb. cocktail franks

   Combine ketchup, pineapple, jelly, and jalapenos. Cook over medium heat until jelly is melted. Stir in franks and heat. Serve warm with picks. Makes 12-15 servings.

Nutty Coconut Bars

   1 2/3 c. all-purpose flour
   2 Tbsp. sugar
   1/2 c. margarine, softened
   1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate morsels
   1/2 c. white chocolate morsels
   3/4 c. flaked coconut
   1 can (15 os.) sweetened condensed skimmed milk
   3/4 c. chopped walnuts

   Combine flour and sugar in small bowl. Cut in margarine. Press evenly in bottom of 11x7x11/2-inch glass baking dish. Microwave on high for 3 minutes, or until set, rotating dish a half turn once during cooking time. Sprinkle with coconut. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over coconut. Top with walnuts. Microwave on high for seven minutes, rotating dish a half turn once during cooking time. Remove from microwave oven. Let cool several hours or overnight before cutting into bars.

Caramel Clusters

   1 (14-oz) pkg. caramels
   1/4 c. water
   6 c. bite-size crispy rice cereal squares
   2 c. pecan halves

   Heat oven to 300 degrees. Melt caramels with water in heavy 2 1/2 to 3-quart saucepan on low heat, stirring frequently until smooth. Add cereal and pecans; mix lightly until well coated. Spread into greased 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Bake 25 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes. Turn out onto greased wax paper. Cool thoroughly; break apart. Makes about 10 cups.