Southern Spicy Vidalia Hot Wings

Southern Spicy Vidalia Hot Wings
Recipes in this Post

We’ve been eating a lot of chicken lately, especially fried chicken. That’s because I finally make excellent bacon fried chicken, and don’t like seeing good shortening go to waste. One of my favorite ways to have chicken is Buffalo Wings. Spane’s father, Douglas, gave me a recipe from the bar where Buffalo Wings originated, when he was frequenting the establishment and became friends with the owner.

Different Strokes for Different Folks

Most Buffalo wings are made with a Louisiana hot sauce, quite often Franks. It’s good, but, I wanted to experiment a little. There is a nice Southern company, Glory Foods, that makes wonderful canned Butter Beans. I love ’em. When I was at the market buying wings, I saw that they also make Spicy Vidalia Hot Sauce. Spicy and slightly sweet, I thought that would make an interesting change from the usual Louisiana style hot sauces associated with this dish. I was right, that sauce was perfect, and it has not become my favorite hot sauce.

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Brisket of Beef in Wine Sauce

Brisket of Beef in Wine Sauce
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When I was a little girl my mother used to make a beef dish that I loved. I never knew what it was until I became an adult and learned it was called brisket of beef. I liked that the meat was tender, and full of flavor. Finding it in the market, however, was a chore. I would only see Corned Beef, which I like very much, but it’s not the same thing.

While I was thinking about that brisket I had as a little girl growing up in Germany, I realized that my mother never made it after we moved back to the United States. Maybe it wasn’t my mother’s dish after all, maybe it was our German maid, Elfrida’s brisket I remember so fondly.

Either way, when I found brisket at the local butcher shop, I knew I had to try making it. I figured I would do something similar to Oxen Shvantz Suppe – Braised Oxtails, which also takes a long time to cook. It’s hot and I didn’t want to be in a hot kitchen all day, so I used my 4 quart Nesco to slowly braise the brisket. It was delicious!

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Bacon Fried Chicken Fingers

Plate of Bacon Fried Chicken FingersRecipes in this Post

In the summer, even though it’s hot, I still think about fried chicken, and I’m not talking about that stuff at Kentucky Fried that tastes like a salt lick either. I’m talking about fried chicken like my Grandmother, Grace Boswell, used to make. She came from Texas, and she made the best friend chicken in the world, well in my opinion. Now, it’s my turn to pass on a tradition.

No Instructions, Experimentation Necessary

My Nana did not like to share her recipes, and really didn’t want anyone in the kitchen when she was cooking. She just wanted, and got, the accolades when the finished dish was on the table. The only time I saw the chicken before it got to the dining room was when there was a pan of it already fried, waiting to go to the table, which was too late. So, I’ve had to do some experimenting to get it right.

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Better Best Foods Parmesan Chicken

Recipes in this PostBetter Best Foods Parmesan Chicken

It’s Better than Best

So, the main point of this cooking blog is that I use fresh ingredients, mostly everything made from scratch. And yet – and yet, I use store bought mayonnaise. Why? Because I really like the way it tastes. My mother made home made mayonnaise once, and I didn’t like it because it tasted flat. I have been told that homemade is better, but, for now, I’m sticking with Best Foods.

Can I tell the difference between mayonnaises? Yes, I can. A friend of mine who thought that was impossible took my regular jar, filled it with another brand, and put it back in my refrigerator. The second it hit my tongue, I could tell it wasn’t the same.

I’m not the only one, either. When the Northridge earthquake happened, I was working at Dean Witter in Beverly Hills, and one of the brokers came to me and said he was moving back to Chicago because his wife said that even though the quake was frightening, not having Hellman’s was enough to make her hate California. I told him to tell her that it was Hellman’s in the East and Best Foods in the West – they stayed, and as far as I know, they are still living in the land of bovine foot massages.

Better Best Foods Parmesan Chicken

I have seen the recipe for Parmesan Crusted Chicken for years, and today, when I was running out of time, and hungry, I decided to try it. Of course, I have to change it to make Best Better.

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Fried Green Tomatoes With Bacon

Fried Green Tomatoes with Bacon
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Gifts from Friends

I have a good friend who I have know for a long time who is moving out of state. To save moving costs, she decided to get rid of some of her things, and invited me to come over and see if there was anything I wanted to needed. Included in the group were a set of dinner plates that I absolutely loved, so she gave those to me, as well as a new cover for my couch, storage containers, some lovely glass bowls, stuff of the pantry, and two lovely green tomatoes someone had given her.

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Broiled Ahi Tuna with Blood Orange Balsamic Reduction

Broiled Ahi Tuna with Blood Orange Balsamic ReductionRecipes in this Post

Since we didn’t make a big Holy Thursday Seder meal this year, I thought it would be nice to make something memorable for Good Friday. Catholics are bound not to eat meat on Good Friday. I was at the market on Thursday picking up some last-minute things, and the butcher brought out two lovely pieces of Ahi tuna. I already had purchased Blood Oranges at the Farmer’s market earlier in the day. I also wanted something simple for Friday night because we would be spending a good deal of our day in the church for the Stations of the Cross and The Seven Last Words of Christ.

I have to say I was proud of my son. Our church has the kids from the middle school put on a play, complete with Roman soldiers and a real wooden cross. Spane said to me, “Mom, can we leave, it’s really sad.” Later, I saw he had a tear in his eye, and I knew that he had finally GOTTEN it. We will be going to Easter Vigil on Saturday night (Sunday according to the liturgical calendar), so we will once more be joyous again.

After all that, I was kind of tired when we got home. I looked on the Internet for tuna and blood oranges, and everything was pan seared. I wanted broiled, so I went my own way. It was delicious, and I suggest you try it. You can even do the whole thing on the grill, just make sure you have an oven safe pan for the sauce.

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