Southeast Asian Chicken Wings

I love Asian flavors. As I’m sure you are all aware, my father has been my biggest culinary influence, but what you might not know is that he cooked a lot of Asian food when I was a kid. I remember a well-thumbed cookbook he had with a blue cover that was full of stir fry recipes and other Asian delicacies. My favorite then and now is without a doubt his fried rice. It’s the best, it’s never quite the same, and it’s one of those recipes I’ve mentioned before that I make when I’m really missing him—my comfort food.

Serendipitously, my father’s lifetime love of all things Asian culminated in his second marriage to a Chinese woman a few years ago. They had a beautiful wedding in Mauritius. Now, when he isn’t gallivanting in far away lands, I get to not only enjoy his incredible cooking—Asian-inspired or otherwise—but I get to enjoy my stepmother’s as well: platters of incredible, from-scratch, handmade dumplings, steamed or pan-fried depending on the filling, stir-fries, really interesting salads filled with exotic ingredients.

These dumplings are one of those things that cause my usual capacity for food to grow exponentially. My son, too. He can eat more than I can, and that’s really saying something. You’ve heard of a dessert stomach? Well, my son and I have dumpling stomachs. My daughter loves them, too, though not quite as enthusiastically as Aidan and I.

She tried to teach us how to make them once, it was quite entertaining; by the time we had each sloppily made one, she had a perfect row of about 10.

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My stepmother’s dumplings

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She usually pan-fries the beef filled dumplings and steams the pork or seafood filled dumplings. They are all so delicious.

Anyway, I think my most craved style of cooking is Asian, whether Thai, Chinese, or Japanese (sushi!), I just love the flavors so much. I always have ginger, garlic, onions or scallions, a multitude of sauces hanging out in my pantry or fridge—soy, hoisin, oyster sauce, fish sauce, thai curry pastes. I always have rice and noodles in my pantry. So when the whim strikes, I can whip up something to satisfy my cravings pretty quickly. These wings were the result of one such craving. I had lemongrass that I bought thinking I would make a Thai style coconut soup, but this is how it met its fate. These wings are beautiful and almost too easy to believe, but most importantly, they are delicious little flavor bombs.

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Stunningly gorgeous lemongrass

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lemongrass, cinnamon, star anise, five spice powder

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wings ready for the oven

Make them. They’ll disappear.

**This recipe could easily be doubled or even divided to make a single serving. Just make sure you use a baking dish that allows the wings to lay in a single layer**

Southeast Asian Chicken Wings

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Time: 60-90min
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 pounds chicken wings, tips removed and wing cut into two pieces
  • one inch chunk of fresh ginger, roughly sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and gently cracked
  • 1/2 of a fresno chili pepper or other hot chili, sliced, seeds removed if desired
  • 1-2 stalks of fresh lemongrass, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 3-4 whole star anise pods
  • 2 whole cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Asian fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar or honey
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry or other dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

for serving:

  • Handful of fresh cilantro
  • the other half of the chili pepper finely diced
  • 2-3 green onions thinly sliced

To prepare:

Preheat oven to 375.

Place all ingredients in a baking dish so that wings lay in a single layer. Toss to evenly coat and distribute ingredients.

Place in preheated oven, bake for an hour, flipping about every 15 minutes. When most of the liquid has evaporated and begins to look thick and syrupy turn broiler on to crisp the tops. Keep an eye on them, the sugar and soy can burn very quickly. This should only take about 2 minutes max. Remove when they look glossy and have gotten brown and crispy in spots.

Move to serving platter, strain and pour over any juices left in baking dish. Generously sprinkle with green onions, cilantro, and fresh chili pepper. Enjoy!

Ps: I updated my “about” page. Check it out. “About Ani”

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Slow Roasted Tomato and Goat Cheese Crostini

Thanks to the lovely and talented Selma of Selma’s Table, a beautiful and delicious blog that I implore you to visit, I am participating in my very first blog party in celebration of Fiesta Friday’s first anniversary. Very exciting. There is such a wonderful community of bloggers, and I love meeting new friends who are so gracious and welcoming. I’m looking forward to meeting many more at the fiesta!

To get the party started, today’s theme is “happy hour,” and since happy hour isn’t complete without drinks and little bites I am sharing a few wine recommendations and my delicious recipe for slow roasted tomatoes, which I love to serve over goat cheese-topped, crispy baguette slices. Such an easy and beautiful appetizer. I hope you love it!

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Let’s begin with a drink, shall we? I am not much of a cocktail aficionado, but I am a wine lover, and these crostini pair beautifully with a crisp, cool white wine. These are my three favorites, and each one will compliment the tangy, creamy goat cheese, and the jammy, sweet tomatoes. It’s a winning combo whichever wine you choose. The first is Despagne Eclat de Sauvignon—a lovely, crisp white from the Bordeaux region of France. This wine won my heart with its refreshingly tart, almost effervescent grapefruit notes. I was pretty impressed with myself on this one, because I immediately tasted the grapefruit notes and, later, when I did some research I saw that many other tasters had described it this way! Next is my old standby: Pinot Grigio. I am a big fan of Cavit Pinot Grigio—Italian, crisp, fruity but not sweet. I have often described it as a very “friendly” wine, since everyone likes it and it’s always invited to the party. Finally, the H.B. Picpoul de Pinet is a wonderfully intriguing wine made in the South of France. It is crisp and dry with hints of citrus—delicate, floral, and really worth trying. These are three of my favorite whites—and guess what—they are all under $10 (at least they are at my local Wegmans!). In my opinion, good wine does not mean expensive wine. Drink what you love—life is too short to drink bad, expensive wine.

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Now, on to the recipe. A printable version is at the bottom of my post, but here is the step-by-step with photos.

**I originally published this recipe in a piece called “When Life Gives You Tomatoes, Make Crostini” on DCFud.com, a great online food magazine covering the DC metro area. Check it out!**

Slow Roasted Tomatoes

 Ingredients:

  • Lots of smaller tomatoes such as roma, cherry, or grape, halved—about 8 cups (they shrink during the roasting process)
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch or two of red pepper flakes to taste
  • fresh herbs—oregano and thyme are my favorites
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and very thinly sliced

To prepare:

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Toss gently to coat the tomatoes and spread the entire mixture evenly on a parchment lined, large rimmed baking sheet or two sheets. You want an even layer with no overlapping.

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Roast for 4-6 hours, gently tossing occasionally (or just shake and rotate the pan). The time is broad, I know, but it depends on the juiciness and size of your tomatoes and your oven. The tomatoes will shrink and their juices will dry slightly. Don’t take them too far; you want them to still have some juiciness. This really needs to be judged by eye, so just check on them occasionally.

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Enjoy straight from the oven, or transfer, along with all juices and herbs, to a mason jar or other storage container, cover with more olive oil and store in refrigerator.

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Note: The olive oil will harden upon refrigeration. Allow refrigerated tomatoes to sit at room temperature for 30-40 minutes before using.

Slow Roasted Tomato and Goat Cheese Crostini

Ingredients:

  • Baguette, or any good bread, sliced 1/4 inch thick on an angle
  • slow roasted tomatoes
  • Fresh goat cheese
  • Fresh basil

To prepare:

Drizzle or brush bread slices lightly with olive oil, and either toast in a 350 degree oven 10-15 minutes, or gently toast in a grill pan or skillet until lightly golden on both sides, but still tender in the middle. Transfer to a platter and smear with a tablespoon or two of goat cheese, top with oven roasted tomatoes, and sprinkle with fresh chopped basil. Enjoy!

Slow Roasted Tomato and Goat Cheese Crostini

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 4-6 hours
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

For the Slow Roasted Tomatoes:

Ingredients:

  • Lots of smaller tomatoes such as roma, cherry, or grape, halved—about 8 cups (they shrink during the roasting process)
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch or two of red pepper flakes to taste
  • fresh herbs, oregano and thyme are my favorites
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and very thinly sliced

To prepare:

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Toss gently to coat the tomatoes and spread the entire mixture evenly on a parchment-lined, large rimmed baking sheet or sheets. You want an even layer with no overlapping.

Roast for 4-6 hours, gently tossing occasionally (or just shake and rotate the pan). The time is broad, I know, but it depends on the juiciness and size of your tomatoes and your oven. The tomatoes will shrink and their juices will dry slightly. Don’t take them too far; you want them to still have some juiciness. This really needs to be judged by eye, so just check on them occasionally.

Enjoy straight from the oven, or transfer, along with all juices and herbs, to a mason jar or other storage container, cover with more olive oil and store in refrigerator.

Note: The olive oil will harden upon refrigeration. Allow refrigerated tomatoes to sit at room temperature for 30-40 minutes before using.

To make and assemble the Slow Roasted Tomato and Goat Cheese Crostini:

Ingredients:

  • Baguette, or any good bread, sliced 1/4 inch thick on an angle
  • Oven roasted tomatoes
  • Fresh goat cheese
  • Fresh basil

To prepare:

Drizzle or brush bread slices lightly with olive oil, and either toast in a 350 degree oven 10-15 minutes, or gently toast in a grill pan or skillet until lightly golden on both sides, but still tender in the middle. Transfer to a platter and smear each with a tablespoon or two of goat cheese, top with oven roasted tomatoes, and sprinkle with fresh chopped basil. Enjoy!

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