Whether your bracket is busted early in the tournament or you’re still cheering for your favorite team into the final four, hosting a March Madness party can be a slam dunk if you follow these simple tips.
- First, the food. Now is not the time to prepare an elaborate dinner. March Madmen (and women) will be perfectly satisfied with snacks and apps that they can eat without having to get up from in front of the TV. A cheeseboard featuring La Bottega cheeses along with several cured meats will go a long way towards satisfying your hungry crowd. Finger food like our Zesty White Pizza (recipe below) will also do the trick.
- Keep beverages close at hand in a cooler with ice. A selection of craft beers, water and soft drinks are all you’ll need to quench the thirst of the most vocal fans. For a little extra kick, you can fill a small Gatorade cooler like this one (http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/p/gatorade-1-gallon-cooler/16gatugtrd1gllnclgaa) with your favorite signature cocktail.
- Decorating can be as easy as crafting a few pennants for the teams still in the tournament. Ask your guests to “represent” their favorite team….even if they’re not in the tournament. Basketball themed cupcakes can be a great decoration and are a delicious half time treat as well.
- You may want to have a couple of televisions set up in the room if there’s more than one game being played. That way party goers can follow all the action without having to change channels.
- Sturdy disposable plates, cups, cutlery and napkins make for quick clean up.
Zesty Four-Cheese White Pizza
3 T EVOO
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tube refrigerated pizza dough
6 oz BelGioioso Fresh Mozzarella Pearls
4 oz La Bottega di BelGioioso Peperoncino, Shredded
6 oz BelGioiosoWhole Milk Ricotta
4 oz BelGioioso Crumbled Ricotta Salata
· Preheat oven to 425° F. Brush a 13x9-inch baking pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Mix remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and garlic in a small bowl.
· Press pizza dough into baking pan. Brush with some of the garlic oil. Par bake for 5 – 7 minutes until slightly browned. This can be done in advance.
· Spread Whole Milk Ricotta over the entire crust. Top with Fresh Mozzarella Pearls, Peperoncino and Ricotta Salata. Bake until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted, about 10 minutes. Drizzle with additional garlic oil if desired.