You may have heard that this year’s Super Bowl may be marked by a crisis, a chicken wing shortage crisis that is. In fact, it is estimated that more than 1.23 billion chicken wing portions will be consumed during Super Bowl weekend! If you are planning to entertain this coming Sunday, there are many other delicious options you can serve to your guests, but rest assured that there is no real wing crisis.
According to The National Chicken Council, a D.C.-based trade group, chicken companies produced one percent fewer birds last year due to last summer's drought, which cut into corn production, raising prices on chicken feed. The only concern for consumers is that they may pay a bit more for their wings, but wing prices are usually higher during football season anyway.
Super Bowl party hosts should be more concerned with serving safe, properly prepared food to their guests. Super Bowl parties often involve a selection of finger foods, a lot of people sharing communal dishes, and treats that are left out for long period of time—all which can be a recipe for disaster. The USDA and the Ad Council have teamed up to create The Food Safe Families campaign and are offering tips on FoodSafety.gov to help you throw a winning Super Bowl Party. They have partnered with Martie Duncan of MartieKnowsParties.com and Season 8 of Food Network Star to bring The Four Steps to Food Safety and some fabulous recipes to try.
The USDA recommends:
- Thoroughly clean and wash all produce including avocados and other vegetables you plan to peel.
- Separate all raw ingredients to reduce any chances of cross-contamination.
- Cook meat and poultry to their recommended internal temperature and test with a meat thermometer.
- Chill cooked and prepared foods if you do not plan to consume them immediately.
For serving, follow the 40-140 rules to reduce the chance of making your guests ill. Keep cold foods chilled to 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below and hot foods heated to 140 degrees Fahrenheit or above. The two-hour rule is also in effect: food should not sit at room temperature for more than two hours so have replacements ready at half time. Instead of using large serving bowls, serve dips and items with dairy in smaller containers. Make several in advance and keep them chilled in the refrigerator until you need them. This helps eliminate waste and contamination. Offer serving spoons and small plates to reduce opportunity for guests to eat items like dip and guacamole directly from the serving container.
Here are several of Martie’s amazing Super Bowl recipes and tips that you may want to try for the big day:
If you have questions about preventing food poisoning and how to keep your family safe this Super Bowl Sunday, check out the free resources on FoodSafety.gov. The online database, AskKaren, has answers to nearly 1,500 questions related to food borne illness. You can also call the USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (ET) Monday through Friday. Both are available in English and Spanish.
The Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers will face-0ff in Super Bowl XLVII (47) at 6:30pm ET on February 3, 2013. The 47th Super Bowl will take place in New Orleans, LA at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.