Everything about Aaron McCargo Jr. -- a.k.a. Big Daddy of Big Daddy's House -- is larger-than-life, from those dueling, glimmering earrings to the ingratiating grin as wide as the Rio Grande to that infectious laugh that serves as constant exclamation point to every brashly flavored meal he turns out.
It's hardly coincidental that McCargo's comfort-food-based palate should be in the starting lineup for this year's team of Food Network Super Bowl-themed shows. McCargo, who took top honors in Season 4 of The Next Food Network Star, never punts when it comes to his big game menus.
Game Day, this week's Big Daddy's House segment, finds McCargo planning the sporting world's biggest game's menu. And typical for McCargo, it will be an All-Star lineup of rib-stickers led by Meat Lover's Stromboli, Surf and Turf Burgers and Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps.
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The "meat" of the Meat Lover's Stromboli is a carnivore's dream team of ham, hot sopressata, sliced salami and pepperoni. This recipe, already posted on Food Network's site, prompted one of McCargo's legions of fans to exclaim: "OMG! This was so delicious! Everyone loves it."
The "surf" of the Surf and Turf Burgers comes courtesy of two pounds of medium shrimp, with "turf" element provided by cooked bacon. That's turf enough for anyone. And as for the Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps, McCargo has gathered all the usual suspects from a conventional Buffalo wings party, before heading southwest with a piquant, jalapeño-driven salsa.
One taste of any of those and the Big Daddy himself would undoubtedly do an end-zone dance, and scream, "Touchdown!"
("Game Day" on Big Daddy's House, 8:30 a.m. Friday, February 4, on the Food Network)