I’ll admit that the reason I was drawn to this recipe when I saw it on Elle’s New England Kitchen is because the recipe specifically calls for Frank’s Hot Sauce and I have a slight obsession with it. And then I read more and saw that the recipe won the Royal Foodie Joust. And the sauce has mango! I had to try them.

The wings were really good. I think I would’ve preferred baking them without sauce and then coating them but the husband loved them. The recipe included a mango lime cream dipping sauce. Neither one of us liked it. It was good on its own but not with chicken.

Mango Buffalo Wings

Ingredients

For the wings:
20 chicken wings
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cardamom
1/2 cup Frank’s Hot Sauce (or another hot sauce, if you prefer)
1/2 cup pureed mango
1/4 cup melted butter or canola oil
For the Mango Lime Cream Dipping Sauce:
1 1/2 cups pureed mango
1/2 cup sour cream
zest of 1 lime
juice of 1/2 a lime
2 tsp brown sugar
3/8 tsp cardamom

Instructions

    To make the wings:
  1. Heat oven to 400F. In a large ziptop bag, combine flour and dry spices.
  2. Add the wings to the bag, seal, and toss to coat.
  3. Place the wings on a plate and chill in the fridge for about 30-35 minutes.
  4. In a bowl, mix the pureed mango and hot sauce. Stir in melted butter or oil.
  5. To make the sauce:
  6. Add all ingredients to food processor or blender and process until well blended. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
http://fakeginger.com/mango-buffalo-wings/

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I’ve been dying to try Israeli couscous since I first learned of it’s existence. I finally found some at The Fresh Market about a month ago and it’s been sitting in my pantry ever since. I had no idea what to do with it! I finally settled on a recipe I saw over on Starting from Scratch that includes pistachios and dried apricots. I probably should have thought about the fact that I hate dried apricots but her pictures were too pretty to think negative thoughts like that.

Needless to say, I didn’t like it. It wasn’t just the apricots though. I didn’t like the texture of the couscous. It was just an inbetween size that I didn’t like. It wasn’t small like regular couscous but it wasn’t big like normal pasta. The husband and the kid both gobbled this up so I’m sure a person with a normal relationship with food would love it.

Israeli Couscous with Pistachios and Apricots.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
3 garlic cloves
2 cups Israeli couscous
2 1/2 cups water
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp ground cumin
several pinches of freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
zest from 1 lime
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots, chopped to the size of raisins
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
juice from 1/2 lime

Instructions

  1. Preheat a large heavy bottomed skillet over medium-low heat. Place the garlic and oil in the pan and saute for 1 minute. Add the couscous, raise the heat to medium, and stir pretty constantly for 4 to 5 minutes; the couscous should start to toast. Add the water, cinnamon stick, cumin, cardamom, pepper, salt, and lime zest. Raise the heat and bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, lower the heat again to as low as possible and cover. In about 10 minutes, most of the water should have been absorbed. Add 2 T of the mint, and the apricots, pistachios, and lime juice. Stir, cover again, and cook for 5 minutes more. At this point, the water should be thoroughly absorbed. Remove the cinnamon stick, fluff the couscous with a fork, garnish with the remaining mint, and serve.
http://fakeginger.com/israeli-couscous-with-pistachios-and-apricots/

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I’ve been bookmarking chicken piccata recipes for months now. I have at least 10 of them saved but I have been to scared to give it a try. For some reason I have myself convinced that I hate lemons, especially lemon on chicken. Plus every recipe that I find serves the chicken over pasta and I don’t like that idea.

Well not too long ago Chocolate Shavings did a chicken piccata post and the chicken was by itself on a plate with a couple slices of lemon! Perfect.

This is officially my new favorite way to cook and eat chicken. The sauce was amazing and I couldn’t stop spooning it on top of my chicken. I didn’t expect to like the capers but they weren’t as bad as I expected. Not something I could have every night but decent.

I’m planning on making this again in a few weeks but making a lot more so we can have leftovers.

Chicken Piccata

Ingredients

2 split (1 whole) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 egg
1/2 tablespoon water
3/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
Good olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons of capers, washed and drained
Sliced lemon, for serving
2 teaspoons of dried oregano

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap and pound out to 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper and dried oregano.
  3. Mix the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a shallow plate. In a second plate, beat the egg and 1/2 tablespoon of water together. Place the bread crumbs on a third plate. Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, shake off the excess, and then dip in the egg and bread crumb mixtures.
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium to medium-low heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place them on the sheet pan and allow them to bake for 5 to 10 minutes while you make the sauce.
  5. For the sauce, wipe out the saute pan with a dry paper towel. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and then add the lemon juice, wine, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Boil over high heat until reduced in half, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and the capers, and swirl to combine. Pour the sauce over the chicken breasts.
http://fakeginger.com/chicken-piccata/
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It’s not often I get to cook breakfast for all three of us. With the husband’s schedule and my need for three cups of coffee before I’m fully functional, most days Landon and I have oatmeal or Kashi waffles. This weekend though, the husband has THREE WHOLE DAYS off.

I decided to make some cinnamon rolls last night, leave them in the fridge, let them rise in the morning, and then bake them off. Well… I made the rolls. I left them in the fridge. And they didn’t want to rise this morning. I blame my refrigerator. It likes to freeze things occasionally and I think my rolls were the recipient of it’s little prank today. I ended up turning the oven on for a few minutes, turning it off, and then putting the rolls in and they rose perfectly.

What they looked like this morning.

I’m not a cinnamon roll person. I think they’re one of those things that you either love or you couldn’t care less about. I used the “Clone of a Cinnabon” recipe from AllRecipes but I don’t think I’ve ever had a Cinnabon so I can’t tell you how much like the original they really are. But they were good. Much better than any cinnamon roll I’ve ever had.

When I Grow Up, I’m Going To Be a Cinnabon.

Ingredients

For the dough:
1 cup warm milk (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup margarine, melted
4 1/2 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white sugar
1 packet dry active yeast
For the filling:
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, softened
For the frosting:
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm milk in a large mixing bowl. Mix in sugar, margarine, salt and eggs. Add flour slowly until combined. Knead dough until smooth and elastic. Place dough in a large greased bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled in size.
  2. Once dough has doubled in size, combine brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Preheat over to 350.Roll out dough to a 16 by 21 inch rectangle. Spread butter evenly over dough and sprinkle with brown sugar mixture. Cover and let rise until doubled. (Or refrigerate overnight and allow to rise in the morning.)
  4. Bake rolls in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. While rolls are baking combine butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Spread frosting oven warm rolls before serving.
http://fakeginger.com/when-i-grow-up-im-going-to-be-a-cinnabon/
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Time to kick off the new blog and I’m going to do it with one of the best things ever.

Homemade fig bars. Like Fig Newtons but more addictive.

I go through phases where I am absolutely obsessed with Fig Newtons. I can’t walk out of a store without buying a box and then I usually shove the entire box in my face on the drive home. I just adore them. There’s something so great about the gooey fig “jam” with the little crunchy seeds all wrapped in a cakey crust. Mmm.

I bookmarked this recipe during my most recent Fig Newton phase which was only a few weeks ago but I’ve been having trouble finding figs around here. I managed to find some at Walgreens of all places recently so it was finally time to try the recipe.

These are nothing like Fig Newtons to me. They are every bit as good and maybe better, but they don’t have much in common. The outside had the texture of a sugar cookie instead of the soft exterior that Fig Newtons have. The filling is amazingly good! I had some leftover so the kid and I had it on english muffins for breakfast the next day. I fully intend on making a batch of the filling just to use as a spread.

Fig Bars

Ingredients

For the dough:
1 cup finely chopped dried Black Mission figs
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup apple juice
1/4 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon grated orange zest
For the filling:
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 large egg white
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Instructions

    To make the filling:
  1. Combine the figs, water, apple juice and sugar in a medium sauceapan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook at a bare simmer for 1-2 hours until the figs are so soft that they’re spreadable.
  2. Transfer to a food processor or blender, add the orange zest and process until smooth. Remove from the food processor and allow to cool.
  3. To make the dough:
  4. Cream together the butter, sugar and orange zest in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, for 2-3 minutes on medium speed. Scrape down the bowl and paddle. Add the egg white and vanilla and beat in. Scrape down the bowl and paddle again. Add the flour and beat on low speed until the dough comes together. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  5. Place racks in middle and lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. On a floured surface, roll the dough out to a 12 x 16 rectangle. Cut into 4 equal strips, each 12 x 4 inches. Spoon a line of filling down the center of each strip. Fold the dough over the filling and pinch the edges together. Place on the parchment-lined baking sheets, seam side down.
  7. Using a serrated knife, slice each log on the diagonal into 10 cookies. Bake, rotating the baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through, for 12-15 minutes, until golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a rack.
http://fakeginger.com/fig-bars/

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