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Crispy + Spicy Oven-baked Chicken Wings

9 Feb

chicken wings - plated

Last weekend for Superbowl Sunday, I made oven-baked chicken wings… and they were DELICIOUS!!  I took an excellent hint from the Preppy Paleo to boil the chicken wings first — boiling the wings before baking them results in the crispiest oven-baked wings you’ve ever tasted.  Seriously.  The wings were so crispy, you would’ve thunk they were fried!  I am a big fan of chicken wings, and these oven-baked ones were the best I’ve made so far.  Boiling the wings first renders off some fat, and then baking them on a rack over a roasting pan helps crisp up the wings even further.  These wings are easy to make and are sure to impress at any kind of chicken-wings appropriate party.

For my version of the chicken wings, I boiled the wings first and then marinated them for about 30 minutes before putting them in the oven to infuse them with a punch of flavor.

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Fennel + Shiitake Turkey Chili, w/Sunchoke “Croutons” + Avocado Relish

2 Feb

turkey chili - in bowl 2

Chili is the perfect “dinner-in-a-bowl” for cold winter nights.  The great thing about chili is that it’s a make-a-lot-of dish that will feed my very hungry husband for at least a couple of meals, and it tastes even better the next day.   Also, chili is great for a casual party like, say, Superbowl Sunday.  Sadly, chili disappeared for a while from our dinner repertoire when we began eating paleo, because my old recipe involved beans, corn, and maple syrup, none of which we eat anymore.  This winter, I thought I would conceive a new, paleo-friendly chili — and so I experimented with fennel, hoping fennel would add a nice texture as well as some sweetness to the chili.  I also cooked up sunchokes (aka Jerusalem artichokes) to make some “crouton-like” garnish for texture and an avocado relish to cut the heat.  The result is our new paleo chili, which we are sure to enjoy throughout the winter!  We loved the fennel in the chili, and the sunchokes added a lovely earthiness.

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Crispy Spiced Chicken Thighs

21 Jan

spiced chicken - plated

My Spicy Lemon Paprika Chicken Thigh recipe is one of the most frequently visited posts on my blog — I think because we all love a simple but flavorful way of oven roasting skin-on chicken thighs (and indulging in deliciously crispy chicken skin).  I recently created a variation of the recipe, a marinade with more spices — I wanted to layer on more flavor in the marinade and see what happened.   The result was excellent, and also different, so I hope everyone who has tried the Spicy Lemon Paprika recipe will try this new recipe, too!  What I like about this new marinade is the slight sweetness from the cinnamon, as well as the aroma of fennel seeds as well as a hint of cloves.

Here’s how:

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Spicy Lemon Paprika Chicken Thighs

18 Jan

These oven-baked chicken thighs are juicy, delicious, and easy-to-make — they are great during the work week, when you want to make a relatively simple dinner at home with a lot of flavor, and also yield plenty of leftovers for lunch the next day.

SPICY LEMON PAPRIKA CHICKEN THIGHS

  • 2 lbs. organic chicken thighs, skin on
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsps cayenne power
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • Zest and juice of one lemon
  • ¼ cup organic olive oil

In a bowl, mix paprika, garlic powder, cayenne powder, salt and pepper.  Stir in lemon zest, lemon juice, and olive oil, to create the marinade.  Check the taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary (you may want more spiciness here, for instance).

Add the chicken thighs and toss.  If you have the time, let the thighs marinade for a couple of hours –in full-disclosure, I often make this recipe when I don’t have time to marinate the thighs for much longer than 15 minutes, and the chicken still tastes delicious.

Preheat the oven to 215C (about 419F).  Lay out the chicken thighs in a roasting pan and roast for about 30 minutes, until cooked through.

Turn on the broiler and broil until the skin is lightly crisp, 2 to 3 minutes.  Take the roasting pan out of the oven, transfer the thighs onto a platter and let them rest for about 5 minutes before serving.

These chicken thighs are great the next day, even cold!

Sunday Green Curry with Chicken

19 Nov

David and I discovered this great organic green curry powder while living in Germany.  We loved it so much, we bought 2 cans of it and took them back to New York with us, just so that we could bring them with us to Stockholm.  The cans weigh nothing and take up little room in the luggage — SO worth it.

Green curry makes a great Sunday meal.  I have made green curry the last couple of Sundays in Stockholm, in part because Sunday is our day off and I have more time to make dinner.  Although green curry is easy (especially equipped with a fabulous-and-easy-to-use curry powder), there is a lot of chopping and prepping required.  I like to lay out everything I’m going to use, so that I don’t forget anything I’d planned to put in the curry.  The wonderful thing about curry is that you could put almost any kind of vegetable in it — it’s a great way to use up that half a cauliflower you need to eat, for instance.  My basic go-to vegetables for green curry are onions (about 3), eggplant (1 large), cauliflower (half a head), carrots (about 3), zucchini (1 large), and mushrooms (a good amount — we love mushrooms!); I always use a few cloves of garlic and a thumb-sized piece of ginger, too (both garlic and ginger finely minced).  For chicken curry, I use skinless chicken thighs (about 2 lbs).

I like to prep the ingredients in groups of items that should be cooked together.  Here, onions, garlic and ginger are on one plate together, as they will cook first.  Then, I have a plate of chicken thighs, cut into about 1.5 inch pieces.  And then in the back (left), I have a bowl of vegetables that take a little longer to cook — chopped carrots and eggplant.  In the final bowl (back-right), I have vegetables that cook a little quicker — sliced mushrooms, chopped cauliflower, and chopped zucchini.

In a large pot, heat some coconut oil on medium-high heat.  When heated, add onions, garlic and ginger.  Add a pinch or two of salt, and stir with a wooden spoon.

When the onions are tender, bring the heat down to medium and add the chicken pieces.  Season the chicken with salt and pepper, stir them around, and then put the lid on the pot.

After about 10 minutes when the outer part of the chicken pieces appear cooked (although not fully cooked through), I add more the chopped eggplant and carrots.  Cover; if your burner is really hot even on medium, bring the heat down some more.  Our stove in Stockholm is not very complex, so I just try to keep it on a little higher than a “low” setting.  After about 10 to 15 minutes, or when the eggplants seem to have softened, add the rest of the vegetables — mushrooms, zucchini, and cauliflower.  Again, put the lid on.   As the vegetables cook down, they will release a lot of water, which is just fine — I think of it as “vegetable broth” that will add flavor to the curry.

After about another 10 minutes, add coconut milk.  I use 2 cans for a large pot.  If you can, I highly recommend buying good quality, organic coconut milk.  I find coconut milk vary greatly in quality, and will very much alter the flavor of the curry.  We found this Blue Dragon brand in Stockholm, which is delicious.

Add green powder to the curry.  I use 3 generous tablespoons for a pot of this size.

With a spatula, give the pot a nice, gentle stir.  Bring the heat down to a simmer, and keep cooking until all the vegetables are cooked.  I like to keep the zucchini on the side of al dente, so that they don’t totally disintegrate and disappear into the curry.

And here is a nice, hearty bowl of green curry with chicken!   Green curry packed with fresh vegetables and protein makes a fabulously comforting dish for the winter.  We are so happy that we have our favorite green curry powder with us as we experience our first Scandinavian winter.

P.S. Green curry makes fabulous leftovers — maybe even tastier the next day!