September 13, 2012

Tailgate with Garlic Parmesan Wings

The best time of year is right around the corner friends.  Fall/Autumn is amazing for a plethora of reasons.  It brings us crisp cool weather, delicious soups and stews to warm our souls, the smell of leaves and football.  I could go on and on, as it’s my favorite season.

These wings are the perfect snack for your crew while they cheer on their favorite team during football season.  They’re actually great for anytime but football is here and wings and football go together so well.  I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

I bought a big package of wings on sale and decided I’d make a first attempt to make a mouth-watering coating so we could have homemade wings.  This is a much more cost efficient option than eating out. My husband and I both love Garlic Parmesan so that is what I chose to try out.   They turned out better than I expected.  My husband usually likes his wings fried vs. baked and well done.
I took a chance by baking them and just left them in a little longer to get the crispiness to his liking.  I also cut up celery and carrots into sticks and served with an individual bowl of ranch dressing.  He loved them!

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 /2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 pounds chicken wings
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt (I used Emeril’s Original Essence but Lawry’s would work)
  1. Preheat oven to 425F. In a small bowl, mix together the oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin and salt. Lay the chicken wings on a baking sheet and season the chicken wings with this mixture.
  2. Bake the chicken wings for 30-40 minutes or until skin is golden brown. (I left them in for about 50 minutes for extra crispy.) I flipped them half way through so that both sides get crispy. While the chicken is baking, mix together the butter, dried basil, garlic, Parmesan cheese and seasoning salt.
  3. When the chicken is cooked through, toss the wings with the garlic/cheese/butter sauce. Serve with the blue cheese or ranch dressing.

September 5, 2012

Easy Spaghetti

This dish is sure to be a household favorite as it is super simple and delicious for all ages! I remember when I was younger I craved creamy sauces on my pasta. One of my favorite dishes was Chicken Alfredo. As I got older and tasted different sauces and then started experimenting in the kitchen, I realized a heavy sauce is not necessary for pasta to be delicious and satisfying. Kids and even some adults may not understand that just because it’s healthy doesn’t mean it lacks in flavor.

As I’ve found with a few dishes, lighter is better (and easier in most cases). I’m getting older and it’s harder to work off the calories, so stuffing my face with tons of pasta and fattening sauces isn’t something I do on a regular basis anymore. So I try to limit myself as much as possible. Don’t get me wrong; I still make pasta with alfredo sauce every now and then. That stuff is too good to remove completely from my life.
This light recipe came about when I didn’t want to deal with making a sauce one night and I decided just to add just a couple of ingredients I had on hand to give the spaghetti some flavor. The result was a light spaghetti with lots of flavor. This is my go-to recipe and I make a ton so I can have lunch and dinner the next day. It will feed a family of 4 easily.
You can really add anything you wish to this dish. If you dislike or don’t have capers on hand, switch out with ½ c or so of peas or any other favorite cooked vegetable. Broccoli florets would also be a great addition.

1 lb thin or regular spaghetti
1 c chicken or vegetable broth
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp capers
Salt and pepper to taste
Grated Parmesan for sprinkling
  1. Cook the spaghetti according to package.
  2. While spaghetti is draining, add butter, oil, broth and capers to the hot spaghetti pan and stir.
  3. Once butter is melted, toss in the spaghetti to the pan.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top and serve.