Do you like playing games? Do you enjoy cooking? Do you like to occasionally have more than just soda pop and potato chips as snacks for game night? In this new Monday blog series, game industry personalities will be sharing some of their favorite recipes for game night munchies. Welcome to Gaming Gastronomy! This week our cheesy recipes come from the kitchen of my friend, Rev. Derek ‘The Geekpreacher’ White.
“Rev. Derek ‘The Geekpreacher’ White (Blog, Facebook, Twitter) first played Dungeons & Dragons in the early 1980s and has come to enjoy a wide range of tabletop games over the years. Derek is known for his chaplaincy work at various gaming conventions around the country where he often speaks on the topics of faith and gaming. He also leads ecumenical worship services at many of these conventions when invited to do so. In 2016, he was made the official chaplain of GaryCon, an annual convention held in March in Lake Geneva in honor of the co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons, Gary Gygax. He is also an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church and currently serves as the pastor of two congregations in Tennessee, where he occasionally teaches college courses on ethics and world religion.”
Thanks for asking! I’m honored and I’m happy to be asked to share my recipe. So, here goes:
My favorite recipes for game nights can vary depending on whether we have a meal beforehand or not. If we have dinner before, then most of the snacks are chips and dips brought by a variety of people with some stopping off to pick up chicken strips along the way.
However, most of the time we don’t eat beforehand, so my wife and I end up preparing something a little bit more substantial but easy to prepare. The first is a traditional sausage link and cheese plate. While you can buy many of these at a store, they’re much more expensive than if you prepare them yourself.
Sausage and Cheese Plate
2-3 Turkey Sausage Links (Depending on the size of the game group)
4-6 tablespoons Olive Oil (2 Tablespoons per link)
1 Large Block Medium Cheddar Cheese
1 Large Block Mild Cheddar Cheese
1 Box of your favorite cracker. (Since I’ve been trying to be more healthy, I have been using Snack Factory Pretzel Crisps)
1 Bottle of Light Ranch Dressing or Bleu Cheese Dressing
Slice links into neat small circles and then heat oil in large skillet. Brown sausage on both sides. While sausage is heating, dice all the blocks of cheese and place on serving tray with crackers. Use a small bowl for dip. After sausage is cooked place dip in the center.
This a fairly simple and easy-to-create platter, and most of your gamers will be happy with it. The various cheeses are chosen, as many people have different tastes. I use this recipe when I have little time to prepare, and it often occurs on impromptu game nights. When I have more time to prep, I have my own take on the classic Crockpot Queso Dip. Here’s that recipe:
Crockpot Queso Dip
1 pound ground turkey
1 yellow onion, finely diced
6-7 green onions
1 can of jalapeños (Drain can and dice them)
⅔ cup water
2 tablespoons chili powder (homemade or store-bought)
1 tablespoon curry powder
2 fresh whole tomatoes quartered
32 ounces Velveeta cheese, cut into cubes
2 (10-ounce) cans Rotel
Carefully cut the green onions separating the green stem from the more oniony part.
In a large skillet, brown the ground turkey, the yellow onion, and the oniony part of the green onion over medium heat until the meat is no longer pink. Drain. Add the jalapeños, water, chili powder and curry. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring frequently, until the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat.
In a 4 to 6-quart slow cooker, add the prepared turkey mixture, ONE diced fresh tomato, the Velveeta cheese and the cans of Rotel. Stir well and cook on low until the cheese is completely melted, 1 to 2 hours. After the cheese is melted garnish the top with the other fresh tomato and the green stems of the green onions. Keep the slow cooker set to warm to serve during a party, giving the mixture a good stir before serving.
The pretzels mentioned in the other recipe are a healthier alternative to regular tortilla chips. There are also multi-grain tortilla chips made by Tostitos which would work nicely as well.
I like both of these recipes because they can last for a whole evening and can be easily scaled smaller or larger depending on the size of the gaming group.
In the coming weeks, check back here on Mondays for more delectable recipes from personalities around the game industry.