Tailgates on the backs of station wagons and pickup trucks were never meant to be a big deal, but when Americans discovered how handy they were as serving tables, tailgating was born. When game day arrives, most tailgating parties extend way beyond the tailgate to tables, chairs and grills. The key to tailgating is the portability.
The highlight of this tailgate menu is a spunky lime and ginger marinade that works for pork or chicken. Make the marinade ahead of time, and place half in a zip-top plastic bag with the meat, and the other half in a container to serve with the asparagus at the game. After grilling the meat, place slices of the tenderloin between any kind of bun or fold in a flour tortilla for easy eating with whatever condiments strike your fancy. Add the Corn and Tomato Salad; it won’t go limp in the parking lot heat. Bursting with corn, tomatoes and zucchini, it actually improves with age.
Dessert is easy. A few days ahead, bake a batch of chewy butterscotch toffee squares to pass around before everyone heads to the stadium.
—By Jean Kressy