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Have you ever tried a new recipe thinking it’s going to be the best thing ever, then failed miserably at it? It happened to me for the first time in a while last night, and for some reason I was super disappointed.

We were making salmon in parchment paper with a bearnaise sauce (yes, we’ve been making a lot of French food lately), which sounded really good. I had never made a bearnaise sauce, but it didn’t seem that difficult…it just needed a lot of attention. So, I was in charge of whisking the sauce to death, adding just one piece of a huge amount of butter at a time. Other than my arm getting tired halfway through the butter, everything was going fine.

The salmon had just come out of the oven and I was whisking in the last of the butter. Then all of the sudden the sauce got really thin and poof…the fat and solids separated from the oil. The sauce was ruined within seconds. We took the sauce off the heat and whisked it to death, hoping it would cool off and come back together. It didn’t.

I don’t know why I was so disappointed about this. I mean, I’ve had plenty of non-successful attempts at things in the kitchen in the past, right? I guess I’ve just never ruined something to the point of inedible before. That’s pretty disappointing. Not to mention that I felt like my arm was about to fall off by the end of the whole thing. But…whatever I suppose. Pick up the pieces, get over myself and carry on with the rest of this weeks meals, right? Right.

On the plus side, the salmon was really good — even without the sauce!

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We love sriracha hot sauce. Until we made these chicken wings, though, I never really thought of using it any application other than for Asian food. This simple recipe proves that this Asian-style sauce has many more uses, and sriracha is definitely going to be showing up in our kitchen more often from now on!

We found this recipe while searching the Internet for some ideas for homemade, healthier chicken wings. We wanted to make restaurant-style wings without frying them or drenching them in a ton of sauce, but we still wanted something with a lot of flavor. That’s where sriracha comes in. The makers of the intensely hot sauce, Huy Fong Foods, have two little recipes on their Web site, and this just happens to be one of them. And man, do I wish I would have found it sooner!

Here’s what you’ll need:
– 12 to 15 chicken wings (we just got two packages of wings)
– 1/4 cup (or more if you want them hotter) sriracha
– 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
– 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

To prepare the wings, rinse well, split at the joint (discard the tips if you prefer) and pat dry. Place a cooling rack on a baking sheet and arrange the wings on the rack so they all have plenty of room to cook. Cook the wings in a 425 degree oven for one hour, or until cooked through and crispy (165 degree internal temperature, plus carryover), flipping them over halfway through the cooking.

For the sauce, combine the butter, sriracha and Worcestershire in a large mixing bowl. (You should wait to assemble the sauce until the wings are pretty much done cooking so the butter doesn’t start to harden and get too cold.) When the wings come out of the oven, toss them with the sauce to coat. Serve with ranch or blue cheese for dipping and celery sticks and it’s just like you’re in a restaurant — only healthier and a lot cheaper!

Sriracha Chicken Wings

I can’t overstate how awesome these were. I thought they were going to be super hot since it’s basically just sriracha (which is mega hot on it’s own) and butter, but they weren’t overly hot at all. They had a great flavor and the perfect amount of heat. And you would never know that the wings themselves weren’t friend because the outside was so crispy, but the inside still moist and juicy. These wings were so good that we’re planning to make them again for Super Bowl for everyone to try!

The original sriracha recipe can be found on Huy Fong’s Web site, and I highly recommend you try it!

I love a good alfredo (or any cream-based, really) sauce. Problem with that is, not all of them are good. Despite being Italian, my family doesn’t have a hand-me-down alfredo sauce recipe…so I had to create my own. A few years ago, Billy and I looked at multiple recipes and sort of combined the ones we thought looked good. Since then, we’ve moved away from the recipes and come up with a pretty fool-proof alfredo sauce. It doesn’t hurt that it’s easy as pie, either!

Here’s what you’ll need:
(these measurements are good for one pound of pasta)
– 4 tbsp butter
– about 5 garlic cloves, minced (you can adjust this, based on how much of a garlicy flavor you want)
– salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste
– 1 cup heavy cream
– 2/3 cup grated Parmesan
– 1/2 cup basil, chiffonade (you can substitute dried basil, just use way less)

This sauce literally takes less time than it takes to cook pasta. Whenever we make this, we don’t even start the sauce until after we’ve dropped the pasta. Usually the timing works out well, but it all depends on the type of pasta you’re cooking.

In a small saucepan, melt two tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat and saute the garlic until it just begins to turn brown, two to three minutes. (If you’re using dry basil, add it to the pan at the same time as the garlic in order to release the flavors.) Add salt, pepper and red pepper flakes and stir to combine. When the garlic begins to turn, add the remaining two tablespoons of butter to the pan and let melt. Once it has melted, pour the heavy cream in. Still over medium-high heat, continue stirring until the mixture just begins to boil. Reduce to simmer and, keeping a close eye on the mixture, continue stirring until the cream begins to thicken.

When the mixture is thick enough to coat a spoon, about five minutes, turn off the heat and whisk in the Parmesan and basil. Season with more salt and pepper, if necessary. Toss with freshly cooked pasta and serve with warm bread!

Bow Ties with Alfredo

I love, love, love this sauce. It’s not too heavy, but it’s got so much flavor. It’s garlic-y and basil-y and it really hits the spot when you’re craving something different than traditional pasta sauce. It’s so easy to make and really versatile — we add shrimp to it all the time, and it’s delicious. So…feel free to give this a shot and change it up to suit your tastes, it’s a perfect canvas for experimenting!

Do you ever grill chicken and think that it’s just missing some flavor? When it comes to grilling meats, sometimes it seems like there’s only a few flavor options. The first person that comes to mind when trying to solve a grilling dilemma is Bobby Flay. But that’s not where we turned for this delicious grilled chicken recipe. From now on, I think it’s going to be difficult to have grilled chicken without Tyler Florence’s garlic-herb dressing.

Here’s what you’ll need:
– 1 or 2 heads garlic, cut in half horizontally
– salt and pepper
– 1/2 cup olive oil, plus 2 tbsp
– 2 whole thyme springs, plus the leaves from 6 sprigs
– the juice of 2 lemons
– 1 small bunch fresh parsley
– 1 whole chicken (or any combination of chicken pieces you prefer), cut into 10 pieces

Before you can do anything with this recipe, you have to roast the garlic. This is going to take at least 30 minutes, so make sure you account for the extra time it takes to get everything prepared. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. To roast the garlic, place the halved head(s) face-up on a large piece of aluminum foil, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and add two whole thyme sprigs to the top. Fold up the aluminum foil to make a little packet and throw in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until the cloves are golden brown and soft.

Once the garlic is done, squeeze all the cloves out of the skin into a food processor. Also add the olive oil, lemon juice, thyme, and parsley and puree until you get a smooth, thick vinaigrette-type dressing. Now you’re ready to grill! About halfway through the cooking (after about 20 minutes) start basting the chicken with the dressing. The outside of the chicken will caramelize a little and get a result in a great crusty, crispy skin.

Tyler's Ultimate Grilled Chicken with Mashed Potatoes and Sauteed Cabbage

Tyler's Ultimate Grilled Chicken with Mashed Potatoes and Sauteed Cabbage

This was seriously the best grilled chicken I have ever had in my life. Once we took it off the grill, we added a little more of the dressing for an added flavor boost. I’m not sure that it needed it, but it sure made it tasty! The flavors of the garlic, lemon and herbs really came through in every bite of chicken…not just the skin (although the skin was the best part). The skin was nice a crispy, but not burnt, and the meat was nice and tender and juicy. I said it last time we made a Tyler Florence recipe and I’ll say it again — it’s called Tyler’s Ultimate for a reason! The deliciousness of this chicken is unexplainable. Period.

You can find the recipe in Tyler’s latest book, Tyler’s Ultimate, or on the Food Network Web site. And I highly recommend you find the recipe and try it out. You won’t be disappointed!