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East Coast USA, United States
Lowcountry porch sitter. Appalachian Mountain lover. Finger Lakes dreamer.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Unflappable Wings

We all have our preferences when it comes to food. Hot, cold, spicy, sweet, easy, or complex.  The one thing we might all agree on is the unflappable nature of certain recipes to deliver the foods we love consistently.  Much like our closest friendships, no matter the era or fashion these recipes stand the test of time to appeal across the ages.

I include such food items as wings, meatloaf, mac & cheese, brisket, cherry pie and fried chicken in this category of food. I had a small gathering of friends to precede another evening activity this past week and wanted to serve simple pick up food that was light but long on flavor.  I elected to serve an assortment of crostini (avocado, peach and salmon) and chicken wings.  Yes, chicken wings. I relish eating with my hands and my frequent guests have learned to expect the same decorum, but I'm not without care I keep utensils close by for those who simply can't partake.

I have a favorite wing recipe from Nigella Lawson that fits in this category of recipe. Actually its a recipe for Maple Chicken 'N' Ribs that I deliver as prepared or simply as wings.  It's a simple prep of ingredients, an overnight marinade and a bake off in the oven. I rarely ever venture beyond this tried and true favorite, but a feature "The wine beneath my wings" in the dining section of Hilton Head Monthly called "Big Tastes from a Small Island" lured me to consider a couple new wing options: Chili Garlic and Orange Chipotle Glazed.  Now the simplicity of Nigella's maple version still reins supreme, but these new additions make for a perfect trio offering at future gatherings.

Like new friends that fold into one's circle of pals with ease, these wings will please.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

HodgePodge Vol. 88

1. In an effort to fight obesity, the mayor of NYC has plans to ban large sugary drinks, initially in restaurants, movie theatres, and street carts. Corner stores would also be effected if they are defined as food establishments. Your thoughts?
Any attempt to focus the populous on a healthier lifestyle should be applauded, but like most things that become regulated those that seek to "buck the system" will find the means to do so legally or illegally. I feel just a tad bit disappointed that a teachable or educational moment will get lost in the "ban." However, can an insular environment enact an edict on living and hope to succeed, indeed it has and it just might expand.
(do you think the character Abby from NCIS and her addiction to the Big Gulp will shift focus in support? Luckily the series portrays itself in DC rather than NYC)

2. Art festival, music festival, food festival...which would you most want to attend?
Hands down food festival, but luckily many promoters and producers have found that music lovers are just as willing to pluck down dollars for concert tickets as they are food and have blended those elements to great success.  My next festival stops include the Savannah Craft Brew Festival, Bristol Rhythm and Roots Festival and the ultimate blend of music and food Music to Your Mouth.

3. What are you irrational about?
I am irrational about being called beautiful or pretty.  I totally appreciate the sentiment, don't get me wrong, but my immediate internal reaction when these words are directed my way in conversation or at some article of clothing/jewelry or my hair ~ it leads me to scream (again internally) "I have a brain!"  Society is built around so much pleasantry, especially living in the south, that I wonder how such terms from my viewpoint could casually fall into meaningless prose and simply applied to fill space.  I want there always to be something meaningful to be said.  Over time I've learned to simply smile "grin and bare it." But there are those rare occasions when I can't resist this reply "You should see what my brain looks like" (which usually leaves the other party dumbfounded).

4. Do you feel confident that you will have a comfortable retirement?
I feel confident that I will continue to work in some profession as long as my body and mind provide the ability. I believe "retirement" for many no longer resembles what some have enjoyed.

5. What has been your favorite Olympic moment so far? (2012 games)
Synchronized swimming. The Russian duet team and their music selection to win the gold! Priceless!

6. What would you label as the messiest room in your house?
At this very moment that goes to the laundry room with an overflowing laundry basket and a much need to be cleaned litter box.  Closing the doors no longer hides the volume of dirty clothes that has accumulated or the musty smell of dirt, sweat, and cat poop~and we're well past spraying the airfreshner to do any good.  Admittedly I'm mortified.

7. Do you follow your heart or your head?
I follow the heart always listening to my head.  And sometimes the head wins, but not after a well carved out debate from the heart on the merit of proceeding forward knowing full well the outcome may not serve the heart well, but having the experience a far richer endeavor long term.

8. I was curious when a recent article by J. Bryan Lowder indicated one should read Gore Vidal's 1981 essay "Some Jews & The Gays." So I read it and agree with Lowder in that we should target the "dehumanizing paradigm." Lowder's powerful statement in his article rings true "...the core act of violence that Vidal identified three decades ago remains in play: Homosexuals are still an impersonal blob, a curious social aberration, an issue to be discussed, analyzed, diagnosed, voted on and used to sell chicken sandwiches with pickles~but never respected as a community of thinking, feeling individuals."
Life Enrichment is like a travel and learn program...offering infusions that make every day life thereafter far more interesting! ~ Ann-Marie Adams, Reflections on a Meaningful Life