Ball Games and Summer Fun

“Take me out to the ball game,
Take me out to the park!
Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks,
I don’t care if we ever get back!”

Who can resist singing this song? We all know the words, even if we’ve never attended a baseball game. Wait a moment! You haven’t been to a game?? You must put that on your ‘To Do’ list for this summer! There is nothing better than going to a baseball game. It’s not just about your favorite team or player, it’s about getting out with all the fans and yelling your heart out.

But baseball is not only about yelling and strikes and hits and home runs. It’s also about food. Yes, that may even be the reason why people go to games. Hero sandwiches, nachos oozing with cheese, chili dogs, and peanuts are all part of the ‘going to the baseball game’ experience.

Hero sandwiches are called submarine sandwiches, grinders or hoagies, depending on which area of the country you live. They are all equally delicious! Ham, salami, cheese, lettuce, tomato and that special Italian dressing make them a homer each time.

You can create your own stadium favorites at home. Here is an easy recipe for Nacho Dip. It is very hearty and almost a meal itself!

Home-Run Nacho Dip

1 can (15oz) refried beans
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 8 oz container cream cheese, regular or whipped
2 cups shredded cheddar or Mexican style cheese
8 oz jar salsa, you choose mild, medium or hot (optional)
1 pint sour cream
1 or 2 tomatoes for decoration, plum tomatoes work best
1 large package of your favorite tortilla chips

This recipe is best made in a glass or stoneware pie plate, or another small microwave-safe casserole dish. You can adjust the amounts of any of the ingredients to taste or to your dish size.

Directions:

1) Spread cream cheese in the bottom of the dish.

2) Sprinkle 3/4 c shredded cheese on top of the cream cheese.

3) Mix 1/4 c water with the taco seasoning and the refried bean in a separate bowl until blended. Spread this on top of the cheeses.

4) Sprinkle remaining shredded cheese on top of beans.

5) Microwave for 4-5 minutes until dish is bubbly.

6) While Nacho Dip is heating up, cut tomatoes into 1/4“ slices. Remove pulp and seeds. Set aside.

7) Spoon salsa on top of nacho dip. (optional)

8) Spread sour cream on top of nacho dip to completely cover dish.

9) Cut and display tomatoes so they look like the stitching on a baseball.

10) Serve immediately with your favorite tortilla chips.

Dip can be made ahead (steps 1-4) and heated just before serving.

Healthy tips:

  • remember to choose low-fat or fat-free if you are worried about calories. You want to ‘STRIKE-OUT’ as much fat as possible.
  • some brands of taco seasoning contain MSG or monosodium glutamate. This is a common preservative. It also commonly causes headaches. Check the ingredients as there are many brands that do not use MSG.

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