Food & Football


Saturday morning the air was cool and crisp. For the first time this year, it felt like fall. It felt like football season!

David and I are both big college football fans. We luckily went to schools whose feelings about each other are pretty neutral if they even exist, so we’re able to support each others’ teams. David went to K-State (Wildcats, Purple) and I went to Illinois (Illini, Orange and Blue).

After K-State’s dominant win over Miami, I decided to bring a little Illini cheer to Kansas on Saturday night. Unfortunately, my team didn’t do the same with a loss to Arizona State, but at least we ate well.

Murphy’s Pub in Champaign, IL serves an appetizer called Irish Nachos. There’s absolutely nothing healthy about it, but it is perhaps bar-food at its finest.

To make your own, here’s what you’ll need:

For the nachos:

  • Waffle Fries
  • Bacon
  • Jalepenos
  • Tomatoes
  • Green Onions
  • Black Olives
  • Cheese

For dipping:

  • Salsa
  • Sour Cream

Those are the ingredients found in the original. I don’t include black olives because I don’t like black olives. I forgot to buy sour cream, so we just had salsa. I like this dish because you can modify it to fit your taste – that’s also why I didn’t include quantities above.

Murphy’s serves these on a large plate, but I don’t have a large plate that’s oven-safe. As an alternative, I like to use a springform pan to hold everything together and keep the oven clean, but any kind of oven-safe dish could be used. My version doesn’t look exactly like the original, but it still tastes awesome.

I started with frozen waffle fries, fried in Canola Oil. I think they’re better fried, but I suppose you could bake them if you’re looking for some kind of redeeming value to this recipe.

Then I added bacon. We really like bacon (who doesn’t?!), so I used about 1/2 lb.

Next I added pickled jalepenos. I used these a little more sparingly, just my personal preference.

I diced up three small tomatoes from the garden and used most of what I cut. I’m a pretty big tomato fan as well, and they add nice color.

I sliced way too many green onions. I think I actually used about five, and was heavier handed with them than usual.

Last, but certainly not least, I topped it all with about 1.5 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese. If you’re not a cheddar fan, I think a different shredded cheese of your preference would be fine.

The assembly process.

I baked the assembled nachos at 375 for 7 minutes. After removing them from the oven, I set the springform pan on a baking sheet and removed the form. We were lacking sour cream, but homemade salsa made for a great accompaniment.

The finished product.

The Ilini game was ugly, but the nachos were delicious.

Clearly, they were a hit

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