Friday, October 11, 2013

Orange You Glad I Didn't Say Banana

What Ayaan Is Wearing:
DIY Bow-Tie
Custom Blazer
H&M Button Down Shirt
Gap Skinny Jeans
Converse All-Star Sneakers

Chili Lime Chicken Wings

These chili lime chicken wings are sweet, savory, and not the traditional buffalo wings we're used to. They are in a category of their own. They are seriously that good. The unexpected twist? Pepsi. I won't explain why, just try it and see for yourself!

For wings:

  • 1- 1 1/2 pounds chicken wings
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
  • Frying oil

For sauce:
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 green chillies, minced
  • 2 stalks scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce
  • 1/4 ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • Zest from one lime
  • Juice from half of one lime
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Pepsi
  • Pinch of salt

Mix flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, ground red pepper flakes, garlic powder and ground coriander in a large bowl or large Ziploc bag. Toss the chicken wings to coat them really well and allow to sit in the fridge for up to 2 hours. The longer you let chicken wings sit in flour mixture to better it will adhere to the chicken, resulting in a crispier coating.

Thirty minutes before frying in oil, remove the chicken wings from the fridge to bring them to room temperature. Dropping in cold wings into the hot oil will reduce the oil temperature too quickly and then they won't become crispy, which is the main goal for the best chicken wings.

On medium high heat using a large skillet with frying oil, drop the chicken wings one by one into the oil. Fry on each side for 7-8 minutes. Remove from oil and set aside.

{To check to see if your oil is ready, either take a pinch of flour and drop it into the oil. If it disappears fairly quickly your oil is ready. Or you can take a wooden spoon, stick the handle in the oil and if you see bubbles beginning to form around the spoon handle, then your oil is ready.}

It is best to fry the wings in two batches so that the temperature of the oil doesn't drop too much.

While the wings are frying, in a small saucepan with a teaspoon of oil on medium heat, add in the onions, garlic and chillies. Saute for a few minutes until onions become translucent. Then add, scallions, hot sauce, ketchup, chili garlic sauce, soy sauce and a pinch of salt. Stir and bring to boil. Add in lime zest, lime juice, brown sugar, stir well. Add in Pepsi and allow it boil and reduce. The sauce will thicken a bit. Remove from heat.

You can either toss the wings to coat in a sauce in a large bowl, or lay them out on a platter and top it with the sauce. Garnish with scallions and sliced limes.


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Asian Beef Lettuce Cups

Asian beef lettuce cups is the perfect low carb, kid friendly, easiest dinner party appetizer ever. Instead of making these as wraps (which you can most certainly do) making them as cups makes them so elegant. Instead of using sliced steak, using ground beef will get you eating in no time. 

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1-2 tablespoon soy sauce*
  • 1-2 tablespoon chili garlic sauce*
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon ginger powder
  • Salt*
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Iceberg lettuce, cut into wedges
  • Carrots, jullienne
  • Red cabbage, jullienne
  • Sesame seeds to garnish
*As always, suit to taste!


In a skillet, start by heating up oil on medium heat. Add in the ground beef and begin to brown. Do not stir the meat around too much otherwise, it will turn gray - not good! Add in the salt, garlic powder, ginger powder. Stir a bit. Next, add in garlic and ginger pastes, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce and rice vinegar. Allow beef to cook thoroughly for 15-20, lowering the temperature to low heat and stir occasionally. Once it is cooked, add in sesame oil off of heat. Let beef mixture cool for about 5-10 minutes before assembling into lettuce cups to prevent the lettuce from wilting.

Assemble the lettuce cups by taking a few pieces of lettuce and placing a few tablespoons of the beef onto the lettuce. Add in the carrots and cabbage on either sides and top with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.

That's it! Simple, easy and deliciously beautiful.