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A feast for football

2018-07-04 11:23

With Italy, the USA and South Africa not qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, you’ll have to look elsewhere for inspiration when it comes to game-day snacks. Fortunately, there’s a whole world of flavors waiting to be explored! Try these recipes when their countries of origin are scheduled to play their big matches.



• 5 Tbsp olive oil, divided

• 1 Tbsp butter

• 8 cups thinly sliced onions

• 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

• 125ml port wine

• 900ml beef broth

• ½ tsp pepper

• ¼ tsp salt

• 24 slices French loaf (1.5cm thick)

• 2 garlic cloves, peeled and halved

• ¾ cup grated Emmenthal cheese


1. In a Dutch oven, heat 2 Tbsp oil and the butter over medium heat.

2. Add the onions and cook, stirring for 10-15 minutes or until softened.

3. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4. Add the minced garlic, and cook for a further 2 minutes.

5. Stir in the port, and allow to boil until the liquid is reduced by half.

6. Add the broth, pepper and salt, and return to the boil.

7. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

8. Place the bread slices on a greased baking sheet and brush both sides with the remaining 3 Tbsp oil.

9. Bake at 200°C for 3-5 minutes on each side or until toasted.

10. Rub the halved garlic over both sides of each toast slice. Arrange 12 bowls on baking sheets and place two toasts in each. Ladle the soup into each bowl and top with grated cheese. Heat in the oven until the cheese melts. Serve hot.


France was in Group C, with first-round matches on:

16 June (vs Australia in Kazan)

21 June (vs Peru in Yekaterinburg)

26 June (vs Denmark in Moscow)

And second round matches on:

30 June (vs Argentina in Kazan Arena)

6 July (vs Uruguay in Nizhny Novgorod Stadium)



• Olive oil, for frying

• 4 skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips

• 1 tsp chilli powder

• 1 tsp cumin

• 1 tsp paprika

• A pinch each of cayenne pepper and garlic powder

• Salt and pepper, to taste

• 2 sweet peppers, cut into strips

• I onion, peeled and sliced into strips

• 4 tortilla wraps


1. Heat the olive oil in a pan, season the chicken strips with the spices to taste, and fry them lightly.

2. In another pan, lightly fry the strips of peppers and onions until cooked.

3. Warm the tortilla wraps in an oven or microwave.

4. Fill the tortillas with the spicy chicken strips, pepper-and-onion mix and other toppings of choice, such as shredded lettuce, baby spinach or fresh coriander.


Mexico is in Group F, with first-round matches on:

17 June (vs Germany in Moscow)

23 June (vs South Korea in Rostov-on-Don)

27 June (vs Sweden in Yekaterinburg)

And second round matches on:

2 July (vs Brazil in Cosmos Arena)


Sausages and mashed potato

1. Peel and chop 6 medium-sized potatoes into chunks and add to cold, salted water. Bring the water to the boil, and cook the potatoes until they are soft.

2. While the potatoes are boiling, heat a little milk (or cream) with some butter in a pot. Add extra seasoning such as garlic or herbs to the milk mixture.

3. Fry 12 sausages in a little olive oil until cooked, and set them aside in a warming drawer. Reserve the pan juices for later use.

4. When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and add some of the milk mixture as you mash them.

5. Don’t overdo it: just mash the potatoes until they’re fluffy.

6. Keep the mash warm until the gravy is ready.


• Reserved cooked sausage juices

• 2 cups beefstock

• 1 tsp onion powder

• 1 tsp garlic powder

• A splash of Worcestershire sauce

• 3 Tbsp cornflour

• ¼ cup cold water


1. Combine all the ingredients except the cornflour in a pan, and bring to the boil.

2. Mix the cornflour with the cold water and add to the pan. Stir until the gravy has thickened. Pour over the warm mashed potatoes and sausages and serve immediately.


England is in Group G, with first-round matches on:

18 June (vs Tunisia in Volgograd)

24 June (vs Panama in Nizhny Novgorod)

28 June (vs Belgium in Kaliningrad)

And second round matches on:

3 July (vs Colombia in Otkrytie Arena)



• 250ml dry white wine

• 1 Tbsp butter

• 1 Tbsp cake fl our

• 200g each of Gruyère, Cheddar and Emmenthal cheese, cubed


1. Heat the wine in a microwave or saucepan on the stove.

2. Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour.

3. Slowly add the wine to the butter mixture, mixing continuously.

4. Once the wine and butter mixture is smooth, slowly add the blocks of cheese until all the cheese has melted, and stir until combined.

5. Transfer the cheese mixture to a fondue pot.

Add dippers such as bread cubes, mini meatballs or chipolatas and/or raw vegetables, such as quartered mushrooms, chunks of broccoli, cauliflower or baby marrow, cherry tomatoes or radishes.


Switzerland is in Group E, with first-round matches on:

17 June (vs Brazil in Rostov-on-Don)

22 June (vs Serbia in Kaliningrad)

27 June (vs Costa Rica in Nizhny Novgorod)

And second round matches on:

3 July (vs Sweden in Saint Pietersburg Stadium)

1. Smeg cooker 

2. Kitchenaid

3. Braun

4. Smeg retro mixer 

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This post and content is sponsored, written and provided by Dion Wired.


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