The National Food-Ball League Divisional Playoffs - Swampy's Kitchen Blog at - 319423

Swampy's Kitchen

The National Food-Ball League Divisional Playoffs 
Jan. 10, 2014 8:39 am 
Updated: Jan. 12, 2014 4:57 pm

Last week in the Wild Card Round of the National Food-Ball League Playoffs (where yes, they actually compete to win) the Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, San Diego Chargers & San Francisco 49ers all came away victorious. That meant that I was perfect with my picks on Saturday and perfectly awful with my picks on Sunday. They say you can’t win them all and that is probably why the Las Vegas Casinos throw a ticker tape parade whenever I come to town but that is neither here nor there and irrelevant to this story. It also means that we are a week closer to determining who is going to wind up playing outside in Giants Stadium on that first Sunday in February.

Now if the Souper Bowl had been played this week, the Polar Vortex that gripped the nation would have been quite a factor in the game. I can tell you from personally pounding the streets of Manhattan that it was cold and the wind was fierce. In fact, with conditions like the ones we had this week, soup was on the menu at lunch just about every day, which led me to consider various types of soup when I started previewing the matchups this week in the National Food-Ball League Divisional Playoffs. So without further ado, let’s break out the ladle & bowls and start dishing on the games. (Boy did that ever sound cheesy)

Saturday January 11

New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks

Who Dat think they going to beat The 12th Man ? This is a re-match of a midseason blowout where the Seahawks dismantled the Saints like a fishmonger dismantles a salmon down at The Pike Place Market. Last week however, the Saints broke a franchise long losing streak of road playoff games by winning in Philadelphia so the Saints are on a high. The Seahawks have looked somewhat human over the last few weeks but the week off and the controversy over Marshawn Lynch not speaking enough to the media are really all the fuel that Russell Wilson and the rest of the Seahawks will need. While I do love me some Gumbo of just about every shape, flavor & size I do feel that the Salmon Chowder that the 12th Man will be bringing in from the tailgating parking lots is going to seeing the next round of the playoffs.

Indianapolis Colts at New England Patriots

The chic pick by so-called Football experts is the Colts. Everyone fell in love with their wild second half comeback last week against the hated (by me) Kansas City Chiefs but now they have to come to Foxboro to face the Walking Talking Touchdown Tossing Ken Doll Quarterback & his Hoodie wearing coach. The quarterback of the Colts may be named Luck but in New England his luck is going to run out. The ball won’t bounce off the turf & directly into his hands like it did last week on the game winning touchdown. In Foxboro, the Gods of Football tilt the field in one direction and one direction only. (I still don’t know how Baltimore won last year) So you can pair that Breaded Pork Tenderloin Sandwich from Indiana that I heard so much about in the comments last week with just about any soup out there and it isn’t going to beat the good old fashioned creamy thick New England Clam Chowder that Giselle will be serving up after the game.

Sunday January 12

San Francisco 49ers at Carolina Panthers

At the beginning of the season no one could have seen this game coming. The Carolina Panthers were not a team on anyone’s radar other than a North Carolina State Trooper’s. The 49ers were the defending NFC Champions and were expected to waltz easily to the Championship Game. Funny thing happened, they actually played the season and during the season, the Panthers even beat the Niners in San Francisco in a smashmouth game 10-9. This time the game is going to be played in Charlotte in front of some seriously playoff starved fans who can somewhat remember what a Souper Bowl tastes like. The Niners however, unlike the Panthers, are road weary & battle tested after their trip to the Frozen Tundra at the foot of Mount Lombardi. I fully expect Colin Kapernick to be serving up a big bowl of Cioppino (and I won’t slice off a part of my finger eating it) to counteract the Hatteras Style Chowder that I just googled as the top regional soup in North Carolina for Cam Newton & the Panthers. The Sourdough on the side may have been the tipping point.

San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos

The Chargers were the team I least wanted the Broncos to face in the playoffs in that they are hungry, have nothing to lose and they know the Broncos all too well. Quarterback Philip Rivers is full of so much swagger & bravado at the moment that he thinks that a Bolo tie is high fashion (too some yes, to me, no – it’s a source of ridicule). He also has an overachieving undersized running back in Danny Woodhead who is playing larger than life and like I said last week, rookie WR Keenan Allen is just plain deadly as he slices through the secondary. Don’t count Peyton Manning and his aerial offense out though just because the Chargers dealt him his worst game of the season in Week 15. All four of his double digit touchdown grabbing receivers & running back Knowshon Moreno are ready to go & ready for revenge so they only pre-game tears we will be seeing are those the chargers fans getting ready for their beating. As for the soups, well last week that lousy tilapia fish taco somehow beat out a bowl of Cincinnati Style Chili but this week that lousy tilapia fish taco is going in a blender and being served alongside an Elk Chili that stands as proud as the Rocky Mountains that spread across Denver’s skyline. (I thought about using Colorado Buffalo but the Buffaloes up in Boulder were HORRIBLE this year on the gridiron so we really don’t want to cross contaminate)

So there you have it. This week’s picks are The Seahawks & their Salmon Chowder, The Patriots & their Creamy Clam Chowder, The Niners & their Cioppino with a sourdough side and The Broncos & their Bugling Elk Chili. What do you think ?

Come back next week when we review where I was right & where I was wrong in this week’s game while giving you insights & recipes for the coming Conference Championships.

Jan. 10, 2014 9:24 am
All I can say is GO NINERS!!!I want to see Kapernick run that ball all the way for a touchdown. Great blog Doug!I like your picks :)
Jan. 10, 2014 9:36 am
Hi Missy Kitty - I really do think that Colin & Cam will put on quite a show. 2 very similar QB's. good luck & have a great weekend.
Jan. 10, 2014 10:38 am
go seahawks!!!!!!i am a saints fan who lived in seattle--what can i say?!
Jan. 10, 2014 10:51 am
Can I just root for an earthquake to swallow the field when the 49'ers and Panthers play? :) No more football for me to watch this year, but I am looking forward to the blog on your super bowl spread! And I am definitely trying those steakhouse bites!
Jan. 10, 2014 10:55 am
Hi nanny129 Star! - so tell me, does cafe au lait & beignets at cafe du Monde beat out the Original Starbucks and treats from Pike Place Market ? Have a great weekend
Jan. 10, 2014 10:57 am
Hi wisweetp and yes, Charlotte is in an eathquake zone but not a very active one. Looking forward to your review with your buttery gluten free crackers. I hope the recipe meets your standards. Have a great weekend and you can always watch hockey or curling instead.
Jan. 10, 2014 1:00 pm
I like your picks except one- but then, I'm a bit partial. Besides, Who Dat Nation has figured out a special bit of voodoo in their favor. As long as a certain couple I'm friends with don't watch the game, the Saints have a chance of pulling a win.
Jan. 10, 2014 1:06 pm
Hi Amanda - I am sure a little zydeco gris-gris can keep that couple away from the TV. Myself, I just need to wear team colors but no team logos during the game. It's only crazy if it doesn't work. Have a great weekend.
Jan. 10, 2014 2:02 pm
my picks this week...but considering my picks last week, take the points and bet against me. seahawks over ain'ts, brady over luck, this is the tough pick...9ers vs cam...I'm gonna go against most folks and pick cam the (hated) auburn man. here's a no brainer for me, broncos over catfish teo...peyton's cheerleaders will be playing middle of 3rd quarter.
Jan. 10, 2014 3:50 pm
Hey Doug, you say "Walking Talking Touchdown Tossing Ken Doll Quarterback" like it's a bad thing! ;) Go Pats!! I love me some creamy clam chowder (and the clear brothy kind, too)!
Jan. 10, 2014 4:07 pm
Good evening gderr - How in the world did I miss having a Catfish Taco for the Chargers. Brilliant. Didn't like Auburn in Cam's day but it was hard not to like Auburn this year. See you next round. Have a great weekend
Jan. 10, 2014 4:10 pm
Hi Mary - I think we are going to see the Pats & Broncos next week. We'll have to see if I can come up with more things to compare him to then. Have a great weekend.
Jan. 11, 2014 6:07 am
Your picks sound better than any I have heard from the pundits here in Las Vegas. I have to go with the Seahawks since we are Pacific Northwest natives......and I like Salmon chowder too :) I played a season long NFL pick at station casinos so I will see if I came into the money this year......OR NOT! Happy and healthy new year Doug!
Jan. 11, 2014 8:40 am
I am so ready for the showdown with Phillip and Peyton. Phillip Rivers was ill this past week and didn't practice earlier in the week. I am going to a wine tasting party tonight, I hope the hosts still have the game on.
Jan. 11, 2014 8:55 am
Good morning Julie. Well I hope you were better than I was in my season long pool though I did win a Survivor Pool for the first time. Have a great weekend
Jan. 11, 2014 8:57 am
Hi Lela - I have a dinner date tonight with my wife so we will miss the end of the Seahawks/Saints and all of the Colts/Pats but tomorrow is Orange & Blue in front of the TV all day. Go Broncos !
Jan. 11, 2014 5:30 pm
Well - - so far you are on point Doug. The Seahawks march on - - and the Pats have scored first. . . hmmm. . . maybe the Seahawks and Pats will pay you to take your wife out for another dinner date next week . . .you know, all that "lucky" thing . . . . it would work for me - - far better than say . . . . wearing the same ole pair of stinky socks - LOL!
Jan. 11, 2014 6:19 pm
Well for most I agree...but Kapernick wont be able to serve up a bowl big enough to help the 49 Niners...Carolina has beat them already this year...Lions, Tigers and Bears oh my!!!!!Go Panthers!
Jan. 12, 2014 12:12 pm
Hmmm.... Well Doug you are 2 for 2 with yesterday's results -- lets see what today holds. It could be, if you roll across the board, the odds-makers are going to be calling you for the next spread sheet. And your wife may get a very expensive dinner date next week - LOL!
Jan. 12, 2014 4:57 pm
Congratulations Doug - - you went 4 for 4 this weekend!! I think I hear Vegas calling!!! So.... what are you picks for the next round.....I smell a new blog (and a new menu) in the works!!!
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Doug Matthews

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About Me
My mother decided early on that her sons would never have to rely on someone to feed them so we all learned to cook at an early age. I really started to branch out when I moved out west to Denver, SF & Dallas. Combine that with extended business travel to Louisiana & my growing love of spices and you get a real mix of flavors.
My favorite things to cook
Love to make cajun food with my favorites being crawfish pie, alligator stew & alligator chili - I go nuts on Super Bowl Sunday
My favorite family cooking traditions
We didn't have a lot of traditions per se but you could count on pancakes or waffles on sundays - dad making scrambled eggs twice a year on christmas morning & mother's day - veal parmagiana on christmas eve, Thanksgiving with Grandma Matthews and any menu of your choice on your birthday. We weren't a spicy family so I learned a lot of good strong basics in the kitchen from Mom that I have carried over into my cooking today.
My cooking triumphs
I love to experiment with variations of dishes I try around the country. My biggest success is here on allrecipes where I had 2 recipes published in the same cookbook - Southwestern Turkey Soup & Curried Carrot Soup. I think my corn muffins are a great starting point and my alligator chili has become a much requested Super Bowl favorite.
My cooking tragedies
There have been a few times in the past where I tossed everything and took everyone to a restaurant instead. I'm not too proud to say my cooking is awful when it really is.
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