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Entries in chicken (2)

Wednesday
Aug242011

Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings

Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings

Growing up in the Midwest, spices weren't necessarily used frequently and with great abandon. Well, at least not in my home. In fact, I had only two spices in my repertoire—salt and pepper. The salt was brought out whenever anything needed extra flavor. Butter noodles feeling a bit bland? Salt. Mashed potatoes need a little flavor? Salt. When I was feeling very adventurous, I'd break out the pepper. Pepper was the special occasion spice—to be used sparingly and with great respect.

You see, just a few years ago pepper had too much heat for my poor taste buds.

Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings

As someone who loves food, I also love flavor. Unusual flavor combinations, new profiles, new experiences—I'm all for it. In restaurants, I like to choose dishes with bold flavors. Chicken and mushrooms served with a Marsala wine reduction? Mmmm. Scallops in a rich sun-dried tomato butter? Yes, please.

Though I love flavor, I don't always practice what I preach when I cook at home. The sad truth is that I could subsist off of unseasoned noodles and plain oatmeal without complaint. And I do. I often find myself falling into a routine of making and eating bland food so much that it seems unusual when I sprinkle my eggs with a bit of pepper. Perhaps there is some truth to the Midwest stereotype that we love our bland comfort food.

Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings

Nevertheless, I've been trying to break out of my flavorless cooking shell. When my friend Frances urged me to try to replicate a recipe for Thai Peanut Chili Chicken Wings that she happened upon at a food truck, I jumped on the idea. Despite the fact that I had no idea what the original even tasted like (and thus had no right to even attempt to replicate a recipe), I was intrigued by the idea of a spicy peanut chicken wing. Spicy, salty, and sweet all at the same time? I needed to know what these tasted like. I needed to have them in my stomach. And now, after making these, I know you need to have them in your stomach too.

Hello, flavor! It's been too long.

Do you ever find yourself in a flavor rut?

Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings

These Sweet & Spicy Peanut Chili Chicken Wings are exactly that—sweet and spicy. Chicken wings are marinated in garlic and ginger before being baked (not fried!). The wings are then coated in a peanut chili sauce. Peanut butter lends a sweet quality to the dish while the chili keeps your taste buds awake. Believe me, it really is a bold, beautiful flavor combination. I love that not only the coating of the wings holds bold flavor, but the chicken itself does too, thanks to the marinade. If you are looking to add a little spice into your cooking life, these chicken wings definitely fit the bill.

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Sunday
Jan162011

Savory Sundays: Minnesota Wild Rice Soup

Minnesota Wild Rice Soup

Minnesota Wild Rice Soup is standard fare throughout the upper Midwest. In the middle of our cold and frigid winters, we look for hot and hearty foods to keep our insides nice and warm. Soup does just the trick.

It has become somewhat of a tradition in my family to make a big pot of soup on Sunday mornings. We all sit down to a big bowl and with a side of fresh bread and eat as much as we can possibly stand. My mom always loved these soup Sundays because there were so many leftovers it would feed us again on Monday and Tuesday. Plus, I always think soup tastes better the second time around. The flavors have really had a chance to meld together.

Minnesota Wild Rice Soup

Wild rice is notorious for being extremely healthy. It has fewer calories than white rice and brown rice and still manages to hold far more nutrients in its small grains. Wild rice has three times as much fiber and twice as much protein as white rice. Compared to brown rice, wild rice has a third of the fat and half the sodium. Wild rice is packed with vitamins and minerals that contribute to a healthy and balanced diet.

Wild rice really has a unique and chewy texture. Even if you don't get around to making this soup, I still think you should give wild rice a try. You would be missing out on a flavor experience if you didn't give it a chance.

Minnesota Wild Rice Soup

Minnesota Wild Rice Soup is a rich and hearty soup that will keep your insides warm when it's cold outside. The wild rice gives this soup an interesting texture and a subtle nutty flavor that complements the vegetables well. The addition of chicken turns this soup into a well-rounded meal. Find yourself some wild rice and make this today!

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