Thursday, January 12, 2012

Some Exciting News: The Weekend Gourmet Is Going to Indianapolis Courtesy of Red Gold Tomatoes!!!

I had planned to share a killer recipe for Vanilla-Roasted Strawberries with Red Wine Reduction in here tonight...but I'm pre-empting that post to share some very exciting news that I received this afternoon. Red Gold Tomatoes sent me an e-mail letting me know that The Weekend Gourmet is one of seven winning food blogs in their Taste of the NFL contest!!! I'll be spending Super Bowl weekend in Indianapolis visiting Red Gold's headquarters and attending the Taste of the NFL! I won't be attending the Super Bowl, but just to be in Indianapolis in the middle of all the excitement will be totally cool. The only thing that could make this whole thing even better? If my beloved Houston Texans somehow are playing the Super Bowl this year...two more wins, and we're there!!

Taste of the NFL, also known as "A Party With a Purpose," is an annual Super Bowl event that raises money for food banks around the United States. The party is a strolling food and wine event featuring chefs from every NFL city. They'll serve their signature dish...and a current or alumni member from each NFL team will be present at the booth!! That's 35 food stations where I'll be lucky enough to meet great chefs...and NFL players! Ted Allen, host of Food Network's Chopped will be there, and Sara Evans will be performing.

Before the party, I'll spend the day Saturday touring the Red Gold facilities and see how they grow and process their delicious tomato products. This should be fun and educational! I want to share some of the recipes that I've made featuring Red Gold tomatoes. They really are my personal go-to canned tomato...they are consistently tasty and have a great vibrant red color! Boy...I've used a LOT of exclamation points in this post. Can you tell that I'm very excited to have been selected?!?!?

(1) Spicy Shrimp and Corn Bisque: This spicy soup combines shrimp, corn, Red Gold diced tomatoes, and a few shakes of Tabasco. The result is a creamy, satisfying chowder...perfect for a chilly evening.

(2) Sausage-White Bean Minestrone: This soup is a real winner! It combines Italian sausage, white beans, Red Gold diced tomatoes, and pasta. The result is a hearty meal-in-a-bowl that will satisfy the hungriest of appetites.

(3) Gameday Fiesta Tortilla Spirals:  These are a fun gameday snack that you can assemble the day before and then slice just before serving. Made with spinach wraps, cream cheese, co-jack cheese, green onions, jalapeno, and Red Gold Mexican Fiesta petite diced tomatoes...these little bites are perfect party munchies!

(4) Kitchen Sink Jambalaya:  This spicy jambalaya is full of flavors: chicken, andouille sausage, tasso ham, shrimp, lots of Cajun seasoning, and Red Gold diced tomatoes. It's great for serving a cook and serve it in the same pot! Add a salad and some hot French bread and you're good to go!

I promise to take my camera with me and capture all the fun details of the weekend! Then I'll come back here and share pictures, stories, and anecdotes with all of you. I'm also really looking forward to meeting the other six bloggers who won the contest. Make sure you come back here on Saturday to hear more about those Vanilla-Roasted Strawberries...they are amazing and SO easy to whip up for an easy, impressive dessert.

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