I know, I know, wings are probably not the healthiest part of the chicken but these are so finger licking good you won’t be able to resist. Plus it’s summer time and they make a great appetizer to whatever you’re grilling on the BBQ. The wings are super easy to prepare as you get them started in the oven under the broiler and when you are ready to serve them just finish them off on the BBQ to get a bit of charring and the required grill marks before you toss them with the spicy sweet sauce. The whole process will take you under 30 minutes.
My only piece of advice with regards to these wings is that you should make more than you need, as it’s guaranteed that you and your guests will be begging for more!
Serves 6, about 5 wings per person
spicy sweet sticky wings
30 chicken wing pieces, cut at the joints and wingtips discarded
4 tablespoons of non-salted butter
¼ cup of jalapeno jelly or pepper jelly (you can find it at the grocery store where you will find canned or bottled grilled peppers)
2 tablespoons of honey or agave syrup
2 jalapeno chilies, seeded and minced
1 teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon chile powder
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
pinch each kosher salt and black pepper
Preheat broiler on high.
Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil.
Rinse the chicken wings under cold water and pat dry. The wings you will get at the grocery store will mostly not be cut up. They are however easy to cut, just lay the whole wing flat on the cutting board, feel for the joint where the wing tip (smaller pointy section) connects to the rest of the wing. With the tip of the knife touching the cutting board, just cut straight through at the joint, which separates the wing tip from the wing. Discard the wing tip. Then locate the joint, which connects the wing and the small shaped drumstick, and by using the same technique simply cut through the joint to separate these two parts.
Arrange wings in a single layer on the baking sheet and place under the broiler for about 6 to 8 minutes until one side turns brown then turn all the wings over and broil for another 6 to 8 minutes until brown and cooked through.
In a small sauce pan melt butter over low heat then combine all of the remaining ingredients and heat through for about 5 minutes and keep warm on low until ready to serve the wings.
Heat BBQ over medium high heat and brush the BBQ grate with oil. When BBQ reaches a temperature between 375oF and 400oF, grill the wings over direct heat, turning frequently for about 4 to 5 minutes until they are nicely charred with grill marks.
In a large bowl combine the chicken wings and the spicy sweet sticky sauce. Let this all rest for about 5 minutes in the bowl. This will give the sauce some time to caramelize and thicken over the wings.
Then serve wings on a platter with a cold lager and make sure to get some extra napkins for your guests!
Spring is a perfect time for freshness but also for a bit of heat. Here’s a great shrimp appetizer to serve to your guests that has a little bit of kick but is gently tempered by some refreshing guacamole. The secret to cooking this shrimp is the addition of a homemade sweet and spicy chill sauce.
There are three parts to preparing this appetizer, in addition to cooking the shrimp, you will have to make guacamole and prepare the sweet and spicy chili sauce. It does take a little work, but thankfully the sweet and spicy chili sauce and the guacamole can both be prepared in advance. You then just need to cook the shrimp before you’re ready to serve your guests. This is not a complicated recipe, it just involves a lot of chopping and mincing. However I guarantee that the efforts you put behind this will be worth it!
spicy shrimp and guacamole
sweet and spicy chili sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
½ cup ginger, finely chopped
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
2 tablespoons shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons hot red pepper, seeded and minced
½ cup sugar
¼ cup water
1 ½ teaspoon lemon rind, finely grated
1 tablespoon lime rind, finely grated
salt to taste
Add sesame oil to a pan over medium heat. Add ginger, garlic, shallots and hot red peppers and sauté until softened for about 2 minutes.
Add sugar and water to the pan and stir gently until sugar has dissolved.
Let sauce simmer gently for about 10 minutes, until sauce has slightly thickened and has slightly darkened in colour. No need to stir as the sugar could crystallize.
Transfer sauce to a bowl, and add lemon and lime rind.
Let it cool and season with salt to taste.
You will have enough of the sauce for another meal, as this makes about 3/4 cup, and you can keep this sauce in the refrigerator for about 5 days.
2 avocadoes, roughly chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
½ red pepper, seeded and minced
¼ cup cilantro leaves and stems, finely chopped
1 lemon, juiced
1 lime, juiced
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon sweet and spicy chili sauce as per recipe above
salt to taste
Combine all ingredients together in a medium bowl and roughly mash together.
Season with salt and refrigerate until needed. To keep in refrigerator cover the surface of guacamole very tightly with plastic wrap to ensure there is no air. This will allow you to keep the guacamole for up to a day in the refrigerator.
1 teaspoon sesame oil
8 large uncooked shrimps with tail, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons sweet and spicy chili sauce as per recipe above
cilantro, finely chopped for garnish
Heat a medium frying pan over high heat and add sesame oil to pan.
Then add shrimp and sauté with a little kosher salt. When shrimp is halfway cooked, after 1-2 minutes or so, add the 2 tablespoons of the sweet and spicy chili sauce and caramelize for about another minute. Remove from heat.
To serve place 2 tablespoons of guacamole on a small plate and top with two or three shrimps depending on the quantity of shrimp you have cooked. Garnish with cilantro and serve.
It’s quite pleasant with a glass of chilled white wine, my preference being a sancerre blanc!
There’s still snow on the ground here in Montreal, so sadly it’s not BBQ weather just yet, which means that we’re still braising our meat! So once again we’re taking out the Dutch oven.
This time, the short ribs are braised Asian-style. It’s got a little spice and a little sweetness and that combination makes this one extremely popular amongst our friends who have sampled them. And we know this because there’s never any leftovers as everyone has asked for seconds and the plates are wiped clean!
This is another great option for a dinner party, as with all braised meats, they are even better tasting prepared a day ahead. It’s also an easy prep, only requires one pot, in this case, a Dutch oven. These can simply be served on a bed of rice and a bold red wine will go extraordinarily well.
asian braised short ribs
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 ½ lbs (2 kg) beef short ribs, cut Korean-style
¼ cup canola oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 green onions, white and pale green parts, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 lemongrass stalk, cut into 4 pieces, halved lengthwise and crushed with a meat pounder
1 cup beef broth
½ cup soy sauce
½ cup hoisin sauce
½ cup rice vinegar
½ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons chile garlic sauce (Siracha), if you like it very spicy feel free to add more Siracha
green onion, finely chopped for garnish
asian short ribs with green onion rice
Preheat oven to 350oF (180oC).
On a plate, stir together flour, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper. Dry the short ribs with a paper towel and coat them all with the seasoned flour, shaking off any excess.
Heat the canola oil in the Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Then cook the short ribs in the oil, turning occasionally, until browned for about 15 minutes. Remove ribs from the Dutch oven and set aside.
In the Dutch oven, add the garlic, green onions, ginger, red pepper flakes and lemongrass and sauté for about 1 minutes, until fragrant.
Pour in beef broth to deglaze the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Then stir in the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar, and chile-garlic sauce. Bring to a boil.
Cover Dutch oven and transfer to oven and cook until the ribs are tender, between 2 hours and 2 ½ hours.
When ribs are ready, place Dutch oven on stove and remove ribs and place aside. Then remove bones and lemongrass from pan and discard. Separate fat from sauce, using a fat separator and return sauce and ribs to Dutch oven. If you happen to only serve them the next day you can skip the fat separator and just refrigerate them and before reheating the short ribs just remove the congealed fat from surface of the short ribs.
When ready to serve, just simply place a few ribs over white rice and spoon sauce over ribs and rice. You can also add on top some finely chopped green onions for garnish.
In the above photos we have served the asian short ribs with green onion rice, which goes particularly well with the ribs. This is a super easy rice which can be prepared in the microwave oven, yep, the microwave oven! The recipe for the green onion rice will be posted following this post.