Archive for the ‘Appetizer’ Category

Asian Sticky Wings

I made these tasty morsels for the 2014 Rose Bowl (woop, woop MSU!). Hubby loved them and so did I!

Asian Sticky Wings

Yield: Approximately 4 servings

For the marinade:

1 lb chicken wings

1/2 c soy sauce

1/2 T fresh grated ginger

1 T fresh cilantro, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1/2 lemon, juiced

Salt and pepper

For the cooking sauce:


1 T butter

1/4 c honey

Sesame seeds and fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


Place wings in a shallow dish or gallon Ziploc bag and pour over the soy sauce, ginger, cilantro, garlic, and lemon juice. Toss well to coat. Marinate, refrigerated, for 2 hours or overnight.Remove wings from marinade and pat dry; season with salt and pepper. In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter in the olive oil. When the butter stops foaming, add the honey and chicken wings and fry until browned on each side. Continue cooking the wings, turning them over often to coat them as the glaze reduces. Cook until the wings are sticky and cooked through. Garnish with sesame seeds. Transfer to a platter, sprinkle with cilantro leaves and serve.
Asian Sticky Wings

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Risotto is one of those dishes that I don’t make nearly enough! It’s super easy, family-friendly and you can make it a number of ways, depending on what you have in the fridge. So next time you’re in a pinch for dinner, here’s your answer! The asparagus and sun-dried tomatoes can be substituted with a number of things such as mushrooms (dried or fresh), peas, fresh herbs (mint, basil), shredded chicken, shrimp, lobster, crab, the list goes on and on!

Sun-Dried Tomato and Asparagus Risotto

Makes enough for 3-4 people as a main dish.

2 c chicken stock

3 c water

1/4 c butter, divided

1 small yellow onion, chopped

1 c Arborio rice

1/3 c white wine (pour yourself a glass to have while you’re cooking! :))

1 bunch asparagus, rinsed well and cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

1/2 c heavy cream

1/2 freshly grated Parmesan

Salt and pepper to taste


Bring stock and water to boil in a small pot.  Simmer until ready to use. In large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat until melted. Add onion and sweat until translucent. Add rice and stir for a couple of minutes. Add wine and stir until absorbed. (and take a sip of your wine while you’re at it!) Increase heat to medium-high and add 1 cup of the stock/water mixture. Stir until this is absorbed. Repeat this process, making sure to continue stirring, until there is only 1 cup remaining in the pot. Before adding this last cupful, stir in the asparagus and sun-dried tomatoes. Now add the last of the broth and stir until rice is tender and creamy.

Stir in cream, about 1/4 c Parm and the rest of the butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with with remaining Parmesan on top (add a little more if you’re a cheese lover like me!)

Sun-Dried Tomato and Asparagus Risotto


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Jalapeño Poppers

I decided to try these after remembering how nasty the frozen ones were when I bought a package of them a couple of years ago. They turned out great! And FYI, I think they would have been even better with panko instead of regular bread crumbs. The hubby liked them, too! This would be a great appetizer  to serve for a Superbowl or game-watching party. We dipped them in Thai sweet chili sauce, and I’m not going to lie, a little bit of ranch, too! 🙂

Jalapeno Poppers


Thick-cut bacon, 2 slices, fried and finely chopped

Jalapenos, 12 small – medium size

Cream cheese, 4 oz, at room temp

Sharp Cheddar cheese, 1/2 c shredded

Monterey Jack cheese, 1/2 c shredded

Hot pepper sauce, 1 t

S & P

Eggs, 2

Whole milk, 1 T

Plain fine dried breadcrumbs or panko, 1 c

Vegetable oil for frying, 3 c

*a candy/oil thermometer is handy for this recipe


Using tip of paring or bird’s beak knife, slit each jalapeno on one side from the stem to the tip. Then, make a partial horizontal cut at the base of the stem, leaving the stem end intact. Gently open up the jalapeño and remove the seeds with the knife or a small spoon. (I used a serrated grapefruit spoon and it worked great. Make sure to not use your fingernails to scrape the seeds out. This will cause extreme pain later! Believe me! I learned the hard way a few years ago!)

In a small bowl, mix together the bacon, cream cheese, Cheddar, Monterey Jack, and hot pepper sauce until well blended. Using a small spoon, or your hands, fill each jalapeño with the cheese mixture. Close the filled chiles, pressing firmly on the seams so they retain their shape.

In another small bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk. In a second shallow bowl, combine the bread crumbs and a pinch of salt and pepper. One at a time, dip each filled jalapeño into the egg mixture, allow the excess to drip off, then dip into the breadcrumbs, patting gently to help them stick. Transfer to baking sheet. Let them dry for about 10 minutes, then repeat, dipping them into the egg mixture first, then the breadcrumbs.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a few layers of paper towels. Pour oil into a deep saucepan, so that it is about 3 inches deep. Using a candy/oil thermometer, heat the oil to 325 degrees.

With metal tongs, add the chiles, 2-3 at a time, to the hot oil. Deep-fry, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Using the tongs or a skimmer, transfer jalapeños to paper towels to drain and keep warm in oven while you fry the rest. Serve hot.

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