Super Bowl Foods Fit for a (Prospect Heights) Chef

Melissa Clark, Andrew Feinberg, Abigail Hitchcock, Albano Ballerini and Salvatore Cataldo dish on what they would serve for the big game.

We're bringing back this article from Feb. 6, 2011 for those wondering what to serve on Sunday:


 and chili are great. But what if you want to do something more imaginative?

We asked Prospect Heights chefs Andrew Feinberg (), Abigail Hitchcock (), Albano Ballerini ( and ), Salvatore Cataldo () and Melissa Clark (NYT food columnist), what they would serve if they having a Super Bowl party.  

Although nearly all of the chefs said they couldn't imagine watching the Super Bowl, none of them had trouble imagining a menu for it.

“I would definitely not be doing the typical thing,” mused Hitchcock, chef and owner of  as well and Camaje Bistro in the West Village.

“Not that I don’t like wings, but I wouldn’t do buffalo,” she said.

Instead, Hitchcock would go with flavors from either Asia – stuffing the skin under the wings with “something funky with lemongrass and coconut” – or France, using a mushroom, shallot and herb combo.

If she had a sit-down meal (working around the game, of course) she might serve cassoulet in place of chili, accompanied by a winter salad with escarole and chicory, topped with apples, pears and a smoked blue cheese from .

“It’s sort of a classic, can’t go wrong combination,” she said.

Albano Ballerini chef and owner of  and owner of  across the street, would also go upscale.

Because proper attention to the game demands foods “that are easy to eat with your hands” he would serve “lamb chops, lots of them,” with a pistachio-nut coating, he said.  

Keeping with the theme, he might also serve lamb-stuffed tortellini, which is less messy than pasta, topped with an artichoke ragu.

Salvatore Cataldo, chef and owner at, you guessed it, , would also serve a full meal. In his case, it would be made up of standards including chicken piccata, jumbo shrimp scampi, and broccoli rabe.

“And a nice bottle of wine. We would have fun,” he added.  

New York Times food columnist and Prospect Heights resident Melissa Clark (who, for the sake of full disclosure, is also this author’s sister), spent the longest protesting that she would never have a Super Bowl party, but said if she had to, she would go traditional, but with a twist.

Her offerings would include a homemade pizza, topped with fresh mozzarella and pepperoni, mushrooms stuffed with a mixture of ricotta and blue cheese, briefly broiled, and two dips: spinach dip with chipotle chili and “maybe a hot crab dip.”

 For the dipping, she recommends bagel chips, in addition to tortilla, since “they’re really sturdy, and “plenty of vegetables” including not just the standards but also cauliflower, turnips and kohlrabi, which, she says, you can still get at the Grand Army Plaza greenmarket.

She might include a “big pot of chili,” but with short ribs instead of ground beef, and guacamole on top.

Like Clark,  chef and owner Andrew Feinberg made sure to note that he is “not much into Super Bowl, football or football-typical foods,” but allowed, via e-mail, that if pressed, his choice would be wings, “because when they are good they are very satisfying.”

Jared Ranere February 04, 2012 at 03:25 PM
I love wine, but I think the Superbowl calls for beer, maybe a nice local session ale.


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