Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Homegating101 Traveling Roadshow: Touchdown Totchos!!

As you guys know, Homegating101 is a blog about entertaining at home on gameday. It was inspired by the weekly gatherings at my place during football season. So while my home is the official Homegating Headquarters, once in a while I'll take it out on the road. Hey, it's always good to spread a little Homegating101 love. Such was the case this past weekend...

My good buddies Ang and Lou invited me over to create the Homegating101 vibe at their place. I showed up armed with lots of food and lots of accoutrements (I think I may need a van next time.) We proceeded to whip up the usual lineup of gameday favorites, but the star attraction were the Touchdown Totchos. Oh my...

Touchdown Totchos are my riff on nachos, but using potato tots instead of tortilla chips. I also swapped out the taco meat for shredded beer braised short ribs. After that, it's the usual cheese, scallions and jalapeno slices. This dish is super simple to put together. The only time consuming part is braising the short ribs, although that's pretty hands off as well.

Assembling the totchos is a cinch, first brown the tots in the oven (follow the package directions for that). Once the tots are done, place them in a baking pan or tin and begin layering the tots with the meat and cheese. I used sliced American cheese, but you can use any cheese(s) you want. Keep creating layers until you either reach to top of the pan or you run out of tots, meat and/or cheese. Place the pan back into the oven and heat through until the cheese is melted. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with scallions and jalapeno slices. You can also top it with pico de gallo, beans, guac, sour cream and/or hot sauce - or let your imagination run wild. It's up to you. Just make sure you have enough on hand because I almost lost one with everyone digging in to get some.

The Road Show turned out to be a success. Everyone had a great time - even though our teams went down in flames. At least the food was a winner! Hey, it's a long season. We'll see what happens this weekend.

Touchdown Totchos
(serves 4-6)

20 oz bag of potato tots
3 lbs beef short ribs, braised (recipe below)
6 slices of American Cheese or 8 oz package of shredded cheese
2 scallions, sliced
pickled jalapeno slices
16 oz of lager or ale (don't use dark beer)
8 oz beef stock
1 medium onion sliced
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste


1. Heat the tots according to the package directions.

2. In a baking pan, begin layering the meat, cheese and tots until you reach the top of the pan. Place in the oven and heat through until the cheese is melted.

3.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle the scallions and jalapenos on top.

Braised Beef Short Ribs:

The day before, brown the ribs on all sides in a dutch oven on medium heat. Once they're browned, add sliced onions and garlic. Cook through then add the beer, beef stock and a bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Put the cover on the dutch oven and place it in a 300-degree oven for 4 hours. Depending on your oven, start checking the meat after 3 hours. Test the tenderness of the meat with a fork. Once you can pull the meat apart with the fork, it's done. Let the meat cool and then fridge it for the next day.

And there you have it! Hope you get a chance to try this at one of your gatherings.

See you right back here next week!

Enjoy the games!

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