It’s almost football time here in Tennessee, and we take this time of year seriously. This town gets painted orange as the season draws near. We’re getting ready for the Vols’ first game coming up this weekend, and our local channel 8 morning show has asked me to be a part of their pep rally show live at Neyland Stadium this Friday morning. I’ll be sharing a few tailgating ideas, and one of them is my fresh and yummy Big Orange Gameday Salsa.

Even if you’re not a Vol fan (bless your heart), I think you’ll like this sweet, flavorful twist on traditional salsa, especially because it’s so easy to make!

Here’s what you’ll need:

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup canola oil

1/3 cup sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 can mandarin oranges, drained

1 small red onion, finely chopped

1 large yellow pepper, diced

1 can white corn, drained

1 4-oz jar of pimentos, drained

2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

Start by combining the first 5 ingredients in a small saucepan and bringing them to a boil. Then remove from heat, and let the liquid cool completely.

Slightly purée the mandarin oranges in a food processor or blender, then combine them with the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. When the liquid mixture has cooled, pour it into the bowl and stir ingredients well. Chill in the refrigerator for at least a few hours before serving.

This makes about 5 cups of salsa. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips as a yummy and colorful addition to your party table!

I’ll share more of my tailgating ideas soon! Are you ready for some football?