Tailgate Recipe/ Claw the Cats

Howell Peiser shares another fine tailgate recipe with VandyMania and gives some suggestions on how Vandy can "claw" the Cats.

Kentucky-Style Boneless, Skinless Chicken
 
Chicken and Kentucky go hand-in-hand, or should I dare say hand-in-bucket.  Yes, the Colonel did do chicken right, but I'm not about to give you a fried chicken recipe for tailgating at Vanderbilt this weekend.
 
Tailgating and Kentucky mean one thing to me—bring on the bourbon.  No, I don't advocate drinking the stuff until you cannot tell the difference between blue and white and black and gold.  Bourbon is one of the best chicken marinades; it gives poultry a delicious flavor.
 
Today's tailgating idea calls for marinating boneless, skinless chicken in a bourbon marinade and grilling it at the stadium.  It doesn't take long to make the marinade, and the chicken cooks quickly on the grill.
 
 
Marinade
 
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (of course, I recommend organic)
 
¼ cup good ole Kentucky bourbon
 
2 Tbsp. dry red wine (I suggest pinot noir)
 
2 Tbsp. Tamari (or soy sauce) (I recommend San-J organic tamari)
 
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce (I use The Wizard's Organic Vegetarian)
 
1 Pinch of stevia (you can sweeten it your way, but I only use stevia)
 
2 Tbsp. spicy mustard (I use Wild Oats Organic Dijon Mustard)
 
2 garlic cloves, minced finely

Sea salt to taste

Pinch of Cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients.  This mixture will marinate approximately 1 ½ pounds of boneless, skinless chicken.
 
Add the chicken to the marinade and cover.  Place it in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 2 hours.
 
Remove the chicken from marinade and discard the liquid.  Place the chicken on a grill of white coals and cook for about 20 minutes, turning once after 10 minutes.
Place chicken on grill over medium heat. Grill uncovered for 15-20 minutes, turning once.
 
Serve this main dish for brunch with potato salad, cole slaw, and spiced herb tea.
 
How Vandy Can Claw The Wildcats
 
In my PiRate picks this week, I discussed several instances where Vanderbilt's football team laid an egg against a weaker opponent just one week after playing an outstanding game against a much better opponent.  There doesn't have to be a repeat of that this week.  Vanderbilt can win this game by double digits if they do what opposing brutes have done to them—pound the ball through the heart of the Wildcat front.
 
This is the week for Jay Cutler not to be the hero.  Let Jeff Jennings, Cassen Jackson-Garrison, and the offensive line play the part of heroes.  My ratings suggest that Vanderbilt enjoys the advantage in offensive line charge versus Kentucky's run defense.  It also shows the Commodore defensive line superior to Kentucky's battered offensive line. 
 
In the same manner that I have applauded the Texas Longhorns all year, Vandy can dominate this game by playing old fashioned brawn over brains football.
 
I'm not advocating that the Goldmen run the ball 70 times and throw it five times, but I think 50 rushes and 25 passes would be an excellent choice this week.  By sending Jennings up the middle and CJG off-tackle, with an occasional keeper by the big six, Vandy should rush the ball for 225-250 yards if they run it 50 times.  Cutler will find more open receivers deeper down the field once the running game starts to click.  If he throws it 25 times, he should complete 17 of those passes for another 200 yards. 
 
Meanwhile, the Commodore defense will stay off the field and play a minimal number of plays.  They will hold Kentucky under 20 points, as long as there are no big special teams plays for the Wildcats.
 
Can Vanderbilt come out flat and blow the biggest game since 1999?  Sure, it can happen; but, I don't think this group of seniors will allow that to happen.  Also, don't forget that there is a big revenge factor to consider.  The Commodores will even their record at 5-5 on Saturday.
 
Another option I would consider is taking the ball if Vanderbilt wins the toss.  Since Kentucky would more than likely defer if they won the coin toss, Vandy could know in advance that they will start the game on offense.  They could have a lead they will never surrender after the first drive of the game!
 


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