In the realm of game-day partying, nothing is more awe-inspiring than the snack arena. It towers above all other presentations in both stature and mystique. This one is big enough to impress (and feed) a crowd, yet manageable enough to build single-handedly.
one 10 1/2-by-15 1/2-inch rimmed jelly roll pan; ten 5-by-7-inch disposable food containers; four 6-inch square disposable food containers; two 2-by-2-by-9-inch wood or hard Styrofoam blocks; two 2-by-2-by-12-inch wood or hard Styrofoam blocks; hot glue gun and glue sticks
Build the arena walls: Put a 10 1/2-by-15 1/2-inch jelly roll pan in the middle of your serving space to get the right dimensions for the arena (you will use it for the pizza). To construct the long sides of the arena, prop the short side of three 5-by-7-inch disposable food containers on a 2-by-2-by-12-inch wood or hard Styrofoam block and attach with hot glue to secure (if using Styrofoam, wrap the block with plastic wrap and secure with tape to prevent bits of Styrofoam from breaking off); repeat with a second set of food containers and a second block. To construct the short sides of the arena, prop the short side of two 5-by-7-inch disposable food containers on a 2-by-2-by-9-inch wood or hard Styrofoam block and attach with hot glue to secure. Repeat with a second set of containers and a second block. Arrange the short and long sides around the jelly roll pan.
For the hickory smoked turkey breast pinwheels: Stir together the cream cheese, dill Havarti and sun-dried tomatoes in a medium bowl until combined. Place the tortilla on a work surface and spread with the cheese mixture in an even layer. Lay the turkey breast on top of the cheese, then top with the lettuce. Starting at one end, roll up the tortilla tightly over the filling, finishing with the seam side down. Use a sharp chef's knife to cut the roll into 1/2-inch-thick pinwheels. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the baked honey ham and cheese sliders: Preheat the broiler.
Mix the butter and garlic in a small bowl. Slice the pack of attached rolls in half horizontally through the middle to make 1 top and 1 bottom roll. Place the top and bottom rolls cut-side up on a rimmed baking sheet and brush with 3 tablespoons of the garlic butter. Broil until lightly toasted, 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Spread the cut sides of the rolls with the Dijonnaise. Lay the ham on the bottom roll, overlapping slightly if needed. Top with the Cheddar and pickles. Cover with the top roll, then brush with the remaining 1 tablespoon garlic butter. Bake until the top is toasted and the cheese is melted through, about 12 minutes. Cut into 12 sliders and keep warm until ready to serve.
For the center pizza basketball court: Increase the oven temperature to 500 degrees F.
Remove the jelly roll pan from the middle of the arena and stretch the pizza dough to fit inside the pan. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 12 minutes. Brush the crust with the olive oil and sprinkle with the Italian seasoning.
Preheat the broiler.
Arrange the Cheddar and Monterey Jack strips on top of the crust to resemble the planks of a basketball court. Arrange the olives and pepperoni to resemble basketball court markings. Broil until the cheese is melted, 2 to 3 minutes.
Fill the arena: Fill the sides of the arena with the baked honey ham and cheese sliders, hickory smoked turkey breast pinwheels, baby bell peppers, caprese bites, chicken wings, tater tots, cheese twists, decorated mandarin oranges, white Cheddar popcorn and snack mix. Add condiments and dips such as ranch dressing, blue cheese dressing, ketchup, mustard, red pepper hummus and French onion dip to four 6-inch square disposable food containers and place one in each corner of the arena. Put the pizza in the middle of the arena.
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