garlic

Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon-Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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The texture of beef neck is absolutely stunning. I wish I’d be able to buy just a slab of the meat, without the bones. That would make the perfect goulash or braised roast. In the meantime, I’ll just have to make do with the neck bones and the meat on them. They are of course the same wonderful texture and flavor as a large boneless slab would be, but naturally, the presentation suffers a bit.  😦
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
These bread dumplings are a typical example of the fact that most savory recipe measurements are at best guidelines. In this case, there are too many possible variables for the ingredients to use ANY measurements. Rather, the measurements are loose guidelines. For dumplings especially, experience is the key to a successful dumpling. As I mentioned in previous posts, most young (or old) cooks and chefs have never perfected the art/craft of proper dumplings for that particular reasons  – one needs experience and  “feeling” to get the ratios of the ingredients just right. Dumplings of any type (fish, meat, liver, potato, bread, lobster and so forth must be very light without falling apart while cooking. By just following measurements, because of the many and large variables, this is impossible to achieve. One needs practice, practice and practice – THEN one needs feeling, feeling and feeling. I believe the reason why we hardly see dumplings on menus anymore is the same as the reason why most cooks embraced the idiotic habit of eating fish, pork vegetables and other food items “seared on the outside, raw on the inside”, – any moron can achieve that without any skills, knowledge or experience 😦
Anyway, don’t be discouraged if by the first try you don’t succeed, – just put in lots of practice, lots of love and lots of feeling, and soon you too will be able to enjoy homemade dumplings (and properly cooked protein) as often as you crave it 🙂

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Braised Beef Neck In Merlot/Mushroom Sauce With Bread Dumpling (Geschmorter Rindernacken In Merlot/Champignon -Soße Und Semmelknödel)

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Semmelknödel – Bread Dumpling

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Preparation :
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Grilled Pork Belly & Green Asparagus

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Grilled Pork Belly & Green Asparagus

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One of the greatest mysteries in our Universe is without doubt the fact that pork belly is not the most popular food there is !
In my opinion, it should be treasured and respected with the likes of caviar, foie gras and lobster. 🙂
It certainly is a delicacy if prepared by a Chinese master chef and transformed into a pyramid, or if just simply roasted or simmered, with lots of spices or just sea salt and pepper, in chinese buns, in a kaiser roll or as Szechuan-style or Shanghai-style braised pork belly ( hong shao rou,  红烧肉  ) or any of the never-ending list of pork belly recipes from around the world.
While I have cooked many of these pork belly dishes, nothing is more satisfying than the dish featured here – it tastes like a million bucks, yet takes less than 5 minutes of actual prepping time (plus a few minutes for the asparagus). It’s like playing the Lotto for a dollar and winning the jackpot 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Grilled Pork Belly & Green Asparagus

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Grilled Pork Belly & Green Asparagus

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Grilled Pork Belly & Green Asparagus

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grilled asparagus & chili relish

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Preparation :
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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan food is much influenced by the Portuguese, so the ingredients and seasoning often differ a bit from the usual Indian suspects. In the 70’s I spend a few months in Goa, living in cheap housing right on the beach. If one was able to forego typical western luxuries such as A/C, running water and fork and knife, living on $ 3.00 a day was possible most of the time.
Those were the days of free love, cheap booze and even cheaper “tobacco”, so life was a constant, carefree blast. And to top it all off, the food, even as it was dirt-cheap, was always great, tasty, in abundance and available around the clock. (Important because of the “tobacco”) 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for  Garam Masala Recipe  on  ChefsOpinion

Click here to read all about  Goa

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Goan Tandoori Pork Ribs With Aloo Palak

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Salad Of Cracked Pepper -Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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Salad Of Cracked Pepper-Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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The success of this dish hinges entirely on the proper preparation of the liver nuggets. They must be crisp on the outside, medium-rare to medium (depending on your preference) on the inside and spicy but not mouthburningly so.
Seem’s easy enough, as long as you know how to handle VERY HOT fat.
If the temperature is not right, the nuggets will get well-done before they are crisp, resulting in a rubbery, dry and even tough protein. But when done right, they are truly wonderful. The result is a great dish that belies its humble ingredients.
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P.S.
If you can procure duck livers to replace the chicken livers, they will lift this dish from merely wonderful to absolute divine 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Salad Of Cracked Pepper-Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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Salad Of Cracked Pepper-Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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Salad Of Cracked Pepper-Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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Salad Of Cracked Pepper-Dusted Chicken Liver Nuggets, Shredded Parmigiano Reggiano, Romaine, Mild Chillies And Red Onions

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Roast Pork Butt Sandwich (Gebratene Spanferkelkeule Mit Brot)

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This  sandwich is as German/Austrian as can be.
Roasted, juicy, tasty pork, rustic bread, good mustard and the pan jus from the roast.
End of story 🙂
Now, if this would be a typical, old-fashioned “American Style Sandwich”, it would probably be as follows:
Tasteless, soft, soggy wonder bread or a tasteless, soggy burger bun, topped with shredded, completely over-cooked pork (better known as “Pulled Pork” around here), limp lettuce (hot meat and lettuce, what else to expect?), pickles, onions, ketchup, mustard, oceans of crappy BBQ sauce (most of the commercial ones are crap, as well as many “Home Made” BBQ sauces, what with the artificial “Smoke” most of them contain),  crappy yellow cheese substitute (pre-sliced American “cheddar cheese” anyone?) and probably another 5 fillers to make the sandwich 5 inches tall, all served with limp fries (sadly, more often than not) and even limper (probably not a word 🙂 ) cole slaw.
If this all sounds negative, it is not meant to be. I just want to point out the fundamental different opinion Americans and Germans/Austrians have to what constitutes a great sandwich. Mind you, I am a bit of an old school fart, the kids in Germany and Austria, as well as kids in the rest of the world, nowadays’ all eat mostly the same soul-less stuff . 😦
I myself enjoy both approaches to a good sandwich, having lived in America for so long and gotten used to it and able to enjoy it on countless occasions.
You’ll find many instances of the “American Style Sandwich” approach to sandwiches on the pages of ChefsOpinion. However, when it comes down to it, the sandwich of choice for me would always be the simple variety with few but impeccable ingredients instead of the “American Style Sandwich” :
“It was the best sandwich I ever ate ! – it was so big I couldn’t even finish it” .
Of course, most of the bad stuff will be found at the fast food temples, who sell Billions of sandwiches every single day.
But thankfully, there are also many restaurants and shacks out there who will serve you a truly wonderful sandwich, made of quality ingredients, properly prepared and reasonably priced 🙂
And there you have it !
Different approaches to one final result – a well-loved sandwich 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Sandwiches  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Pulled Pork  on  ChefsOpinion
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Roast Pork Leg Sandwich (Gebratene Spanferkelkeule Mit Brot)

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Roast Pork Leg Sandwich (Gebratene Spanferkelkeule Mit Brot)

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Roast Pork Leg Sandwich (Gebratene Spanferkelkeule Mit Brot)

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Roast Pork Leg Sandwich (Gebratene Spanferkelkeule Mit Brot)

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lightly toasted sourdough bread, whole grain Maillard mustard

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
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Sautéed  Chicken Thighs

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Sautéed  Chicken Thighs

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Sometimes when I think long enough about a certain dish, I can hardly wait to have it in front of me and to dig in.
Many times, my craving is so strong that I just want to have that particular item, with no “distraction” from side dishes, sauce or condiments. Such was the case with these chicken thighs, which madam and I nearly finished in one sitting.
Aaahhhh, gluttony………….  😦 🙂
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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season chicken with sriracha, granulated garlic, dried oregano, soy sauce and kosher salt for at least 6 hours, better yet, overnight

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pat the chicken dry, saute in peanut oil on both sides until golden and crisp (about 12 minutes on each side, depending on the size of the thighs); the temperature on the bone, at the thickest part of the meat should reach 162 F; remove from pan to absorbent paper, the carry-over heat will take the chicken to a safe and juicy 165F (any more and the chicken will be dry) !!!!!

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almost……….

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Sautéed  Chicken Thighs

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Sautéed  Chicken Thighs

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Parmesan Crusted Sautéed Pork Medallions, With Potatoes, Bell Peppers And Crimini

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Parmesan Crusted sautéed Pork Medallions, With Potatoes, Bell Peppers And Crimini

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Pork tenderloin – so versatile, tasty and wonderfully textured. What’s not to love about this “other white meat” 🙂
However, make sure you cook it to a safe temperature without overcooking it. Frankly, I don’t understand the trend to cook pork medium or even medium rare.
Besides the obvious health risk, medium or rare-cooked pork has a horrible texture. But then, maybe that’s just old-fashioned me ?
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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(The National Pork Board recommends cooking pork chops, roasts, and tenderloin to an internal temperature between 145° F. (medium rare) and 160° F. (medium), followed by a 3 minute rest.
Since large cuts increase approximately 10° F. while resting, remove them from the heat at 150° F. followed by a 10 minute rest).
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Click here for  Tomato Sauce Recipe  on  ChefsOpinion
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top the potatoes with the medallions

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add 2 tblsp of tomato sauce to each medallion, top with the sautéed veggies

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Parmesan Crusted sautéed Pork Medallions, With Potatoes, Bell Peppers And Crimini

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Parmesan Crusted sautéed Pork Medallions, With Potatoes, Bell Peppers And Crimini

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Parmesan Crusted Sautéed Pork Medallions, With Potatoes, Bell Peppers And Crimini

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Once in a while, when you don’t have the time, urge or patience to cook a complicated dish, but still want to dine like a king/queen – this is for you 🙂
Total prep time – 5 minutes
Total time from start to end – 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the filet and your preference of doneness of the fish (internal temperature).
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon With Baby Arugula

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Bella’s Baked Wild Sockeye Salmon

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures

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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 

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Click here for
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Black Pepper & Soy Chicken Wings

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If you think one more post about chicken wings is redundant, I do understand you 🙂
Just move on, don’t get upset, bored or annoyed. I will see you at my next post…….
However, realize this: You’ll miss a chance to look at one of the prettiest, tastiest, no-fuss to prepare chicken wings you will ever come across 🙂
So, if you decided to read on and look on – enjoy, take the time to replicate these babes and be the master of your own future-favorite chicken wings 🙂  Cheers !
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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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Click here for more  Chicken Wings  on  ChefsOpinion
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Click here for more  Chicken  on  ChefsOpinion
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P.S.
If you can not obtain anatto powder (Annatto/Achiote/Roucou ), you can substitute red food coloring (In my humble opinion, this is more of a “pride-issue”, rather than a quality-issue) 🙂
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P.P.S.
I did no include measurements in this recipe because I believe they are not necessary.
If you want to add any more or any less of any seasoning, just do so according to your own taste.
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Black Pepper & Soy Chicken Wings

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Black Pepper & Soy Chicken Wings

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Black Pepper & Soy Chicken Wings

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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P.S.
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This dish is part of my upcoming meal plan # 2 –
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH TWO 
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Click here for 
“HANS’ LIGHTER, HEALTHIER COMFORT FOOD”  –  MONTH ONE

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Grilled Shrimp And Peppers-Brochette With Red Wine-Bucatini And Pangrattato

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Grilled Shrimp And Peppers-Brochette With Red Wine-Bucatini And Pangrattato

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While grilled shrimp is a dish that is well known to most of us, pasta cooked in red wine is probably less known/experienced by most folks, even those who are fans of pasta in all shapes and tastes 🙂
I for one have cooked pasta in red wine a few times, many years ago, but had forgotten about it since, until I came across it while browsing through some of my (very) old menus, notes, and pictures.
I have cooked this now twice in the past couple of weeks, and it has become one of my absolute favorite side –  and even main-dish. The secret to preparing this pasta successfully lies in the red wine. Please, don’t even consider to use an inferior bottle of wine. Of course, you also don’t want to break the house, but, as with all very simple dishes, your success lies squarely on the quality of the ingredients. Also, it is my opinion that this pasta works best with butter instead of olive oil, since a really good EVO would, in my humble opinion, overpower the flavor of the wine. Again, this pertains to my very own taste preference and might work differently for yours 🙂
Also, panko in the pangrattato is a better choice  for me  than regular breadcrumbs 🙂

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Bon Appétit !   Life is Good !
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P.S.
Before somebody gets’ their knickers in a twist about the pangrattato – there is no ONE way of preparing it. Pangrattato simply means “grated bread”.
It can be toasted, cooked in a dry pan until golden, sautéed in butter or olive oil. It can be highly seasoned or just a little, it can contain herbs and/or whatever dry ingredient suit your palette and the dish you prepare. 🙂
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Red Wine-Bucatini

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Grilled Shrimp And Peppers-Brochette With Red Wine-Bucatini And Pangrattato

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Grilled Shrimp And Peppers-Brochette With Red Wine-Bucatini And Pangrattato

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Grilled Shrimp And Peppers-Brochette With Red Wine-Bucatini And Pangrattato

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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