Anna's Tailgate Recipe for Vanderbilt

Anna Rumsey is a true Gamecock fan - resilient even after a tough loss, ready to bounce back with a first class tailgate and cheer her team on to the next victory. Though her humorous intros are geared to each specific game, her recipes can be used at any game, and this week's recipes are a keeper for a simple but elegant tailgate spread to entertain your guests and family with.

Yes, I was really disappointed at last week's game. Yes, I could have knocked in a few holes in some drywall. Yes, it bugged me for a few more days. Yes, I asked the same question, "Why, just why?" over and over again in my mind. Yes, yes, yes. I feel the same as you probably do — wanted that win so bad I could taste it.

But I'm over it now. Took a deep cleansing breath, remembered that it's just a ballgame, this week's a new week. The South Carolina Gamecocks are going to win this week. We're going on the road and we're going to win in beautiful Nashville, Tennessee. We're going to take the Vanderbilt University Commodores and play the game we should have played against Kentucky. We're going to focus on the rest of the season and we're going to a Bowl Game and we're going to finish a great year of football.

In other words, I haven't started singing yet, and I've got some PIPES on me, so let's play ball. And let's do some tailgating with gusto. I'm going to let the gusto be the partying, because I'm making it super-easy this week for the travelling crowd. I've got sandwich recipes that can be made on a small grill and ingredients that won't take a lot of preparation. All you'll have to do is grill a little meat , put some ingredients on the breads and wraps, put a dab of potato or pasta salad on the plate and enjoy an easily prepared feast.

Think of a deli-style spread on your table with all the fixin's. Nothing could be easier or more relaxing. If you make the salads the day before, they'll taste fine when you're ready to serve them after the trip. Add some relishes, pickles, crudités and a great dessert and beverages and you'll have plenty energy left to cheer and not much to clean up afterwards.

I have made the Vanderbilt game in Nashville and it's a beautiful drive. The campus is lovely and this time of year, you should be seeing a spectacular fall display in the countryside and in the park near the campus. Then there's always the fun of going into downtown Nashville to visit the restaurants , bars and entertainment venues. What a great weekend you've got to look forward to.

You can't keep a good Carolina Gamecock fan down for very long, so let's show them that we're in it to win it. I think we shouldn't hold back anything, just take a deep, high-scoring win and get our confidence back. I'm looking forward to the game Saturday night and I'm looking forward to seeing all the supporters cheering for our boys.

I'm going to keep the article a little short this week, so I can get in a very good selection of sandwiches and salads and dessert that you can mix and match and pick and choose to make. Feel free to leave me a message on the message boards. Send me your favorite tailgating recipes and I will be glad to work them into the column.

Until the next time—Go Gamecocks! Travel safe everyone and come back jubilant.

Anna's Ham, Cheese and Cherry preserve Combo

Sliced Dark Rye Bread
½ lb. smoked ham slices
½ lb. sliced Havarti cheese
Coarse ground brown mustard
Softened butter
1 jar cherry preserves
Butter-crunch lettuce leaves

Construct the sandwiches by spreading one side of sandwich bread with softened butter and the other slice with coarse mustard. Stack in the following order: sliced ham, sliced cheese, cherry preserves (thin layer), then lettuce leaves. Can be grilled like Panini on the grill by using one cast iron pan to put the sandwich in, then top the sandwich with the other cast iron pan to weight it down—grill until cheese melts.

Anna's Most- Satisfying Smoked Turkey Wrap

(these were an incredible hit at a conference I catered—still get calls for them two years later.)

Assorted tortilla wraps—spinach, tomato basil, plain white (10 inch size)—recipe will make at least 12.
8 oz. cream cheese softened- can use fat free or Neufschatel
2 Tbs. mayo (can use fat-free)
Onion powder—1/2 tsp
Dill weed – ¼ tsp.
Dried tarragon leaves- ¼ tsp.
Salt and pepper to taste
1 red onion sliced
1 cup dried cranberries
24 slices cooked bacon—freshly cooked, or use the ready to eat bacon
Baby Spinach leaves

Whisk together the cream cheese and mayo, add the herbs and salt and pepper, whisk until blended.

Lay the tortilla flat, spread cream cheese mixture over tortilla within about 1 ½ inches of outside rim. Layer turkey, then spinach, red onions, sprinkle with cranberries, then add 2 bacon slices to each wrap—more if desire. Roll the wrap tightly from south to north, tucking in east and west sides of tortilla as you wrap. Slice wrap at an angle to serve. Can be made ahead of time and wrapped tightly in wax paper or plastic and refrigerated.

Not Your Average Corned Beef Sandwich for 12 servings

1 lb. thinly sliced corned beef
1 can seasoned sauerkraut (onions, white wine and ground caraway, butter)
Vidalia Onion dressing
Sliced smoked Gouda cheese
Grilled green tomato slices—fried ones if you can get them would be even better!
Roasted Red Peppers
Kaiser Rolls/ Hoagie Rolls- warmed

Split Kaiser rolls and layer carefully in this order: Spread bottom of bun with butter or mayo if buns are dryer than you like. Then layer Corned Beef, Sauerkraut, Roasted red pepper slice Gouda cheese, then top with a green tomato slice. Drizzle about a tablespoon of Vidalia Onion dressing over contents, then top with other half of bun.

Mama Mia Potato Salad

Italian Potato Salad
Yield: 6 servings


For the dressing
• 1/4 cup white wine vinegar • 1 tablespoon each fresh oregano and chopped basil leaves (or 1/2 teaspoon each of dried oregano and basil) • 1 - 2 cloves garlic, minced • 3/4 cup olive or walnut oil • Salt and pepper to taste For the salad
• 6 medium-sized Idaho Potatoes, well scrubbed
• 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
• 1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth
• 1 1/2 cups sliced fennel
• 1 cup sliced red onion (soaked in cold water)
• 1/4 cup pitted, oil-cured black or green olives
• 3/4 pound hot Italian turkey sausage, cooked and sliced thinly
• 6 cups washed arugula or field greens


1. In a small mixing bowl, combine dressing ingredients and set aside.
2. Chop potatoes into 1-inch cubes. In a large pot of boiling water, boil potatoes until tender, about 7 - 9 minutes. Drain potatoes well. Transfer potatoes to a large mixing bowl. Combine balsamic vinegar and broth in a cup; drizzle over potatoes.
3. Add fennel, sliced red onion, olives and cooked sausage to the bowl; stir to combine.
4. Pour dressing over mixture and stir gently to coat all ingredients with dressing. Serve salad over greens.

Grilled Vegetable and Pasta Salad

• Penne pasta for 6
• 2 zuchinnis, sliced into inch rounds
10 cherry tomatoes
• 1 large green pepper, sliced
• A handful of feta cheese
• 1/2 small eggplant, sliced into squares
• 8 asparagus spears
• 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
• ¼ cup of balsamic vinegar
• Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
• A handful of feta cheese
• Freshly sweet basil or cilantro
• 3 Tbsp olive oil


1. Pre-heat the oven or grill to 350F. Wash and chop the vegetables and then pat dry with a paper towel.
2. Place the vegetables in a large baking tray and drizzle 2 Tbsp of olive oil over them. Sprinkle on a little sea salt and pepper.
3. Roast the vegetables for 15 minutes then remove from oven/grill and set aside.
4. Meanwhile, bring some water to the boil in a large pot. Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and following packet instructions.
5. Stir occasionally to stop pasta from sticking together.
6. Drain the pasta and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the roasted vegetables, crumbled feta and 1/4 tsp of sea salt. Stir well to combine. Add the extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Tear up some basil or cilantro and sprinkle on top. Serve.

Chocolate Orange Cheesecake with Glaze

For crust
• about 30 chocolate wafers, ground fine in a blender or food processor (1 3/4 cups)
• 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted

For filling
• 1 1/2 pounds cream cheese, softened
• 1 1/4 cups sugar
• 1 cup sour cream at room temperature
• 2 tablespoons freshly grated orange zest (from about 4 navel oranges)
• 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
• 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier or other orange-flavored liqueur
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 cup all-purpose flou
r • 4 large whole eggs
• 1 large egg yolk

For glaze:
• 3/4 cup orange marmalade
Make crust:
In a small bowl stir together wafer crumbs and butter until combined well. Pat crumb mixture onto bottom and 1 inch up side of a 9-inch springform pan and chill crust 30 minutes.

Make filling:

Preheat oven to 300°F

. In a bowl with an electric mixer beat cream cheese until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar gradually until mixture is combined well. Beat in sour cream, zest, orange juice, liqueur, salt, and flour. Beat in whole eggs and yolk, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Wrap bottom and side of springform pan with three 14- by 12-inch pieces of foil, 1 at a time, arranging each piece in a different position to make sure foil is at least 1 1/2 inches up side all around. Put pan in a large baking dish and pour filling into crust. Put dish in middle of oven and with a measuring cup slowly add enough water to it to reach 1/4 inch up side of springform pan, being careful not to let any water inside foil. (Cooling in water bath prevents cheesecake surface from cracking.)

Bake cheesecake 1 hour 15 minutes, or until edges are just set but middle still trembles slightly. Turn off oven and let cheesecake stand 1 hour (cheesecake will continue to set as it stands). Remove dish from oven carefully and transfer cheesecake in pan to a rack to cool completely. Remove foil and chill cheesecake, covered loosely, 6 hours or overnight.

Make glaze:
In a small saucepan melt marmalade over moderate heat, stirring, and cool to warm.

Remove side of springform pan and spread marmalade evenly on top of cheesecake. Chill cheesecake 2 hours (glaze will soften if served at room temperature).

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