Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Balsamic Chicken Wings

I've got a secret: I've got a girl crush on Giada De Laurentiis. It started innocently enough; a half-hour here and there when nothing else was on, a late night viewing on occasion. Then we got more involved. My sister bought one of her cookbooks for my mom one Christmas. Mom tried out the Parmesian-Crusted Pork Chops, and I was intrigued. Giada and I had a few more pork chop dates before the wedding and then I got too distracted to give our relationship the dedication it deserved. Shortly after moving, Giada and I picked up where we left off, and it's like we were never apart! I love watching "Everyday Italian" on Food Network, and Giada's always tempting me with new recipes and meal ideas. After I saw this recipe highlighted on Elizabeth's blog, I knew I had to try it!

What I loved about this recipe is that I had all the ingredients on hand already. I picked up the drummettes a few weeks ago just for "something different". Last night, I did my last minute "kitchen check" to be sure I had everything I needed, and I did. I actually thought I didn't have the sesame seeds and I was planning on using chopped almond pieces in their place. However, once I took a closer look at my spice rack, I saw that they were there all along! Phew! I never thought to look at my spice rack; I considered the sesame seeds as a garnish, not a spice. Oh well...it all worked out, so it doesn't matter!

Balsamic Chicken Wings

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
5 sprigs fresh rosemary
5 garlic cloves, halved
10 to 12 chicken wings/drummettes
2 T. toasted sesame seeds
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Combine the balsamic vinegar, honey, brown sugar, soy sauce, rosemary sprigs, and garlic in a large re-sealable plastic bag. Shake and squeeze the contents of the bag to dissolve the honey and the brown sugar. Add the chicken wings to the bag and seal with as little air as possible. Place in the fridge and marinate for 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Place the chicken wings on a foil lined baking sheet. Bake until skin is caramelized and very dark in spots, approx. 30-35 minutes.

While the chicken is baking, boil the marinade in a small saucepan. Bring the marinade to a full boil to kill any bacteria. Reduce the heat to simmer and cook over a low heat until thick--approx. 15 minutes. Reserve marinade.

Use a basting or pastry brush to brush some of the cooked marinade on the cooked chicken wings. Place the chicken on a serving platter; sprinkle with sesame seeds and parsley before serving.

  • I had to reduce the heat on the oven and shorten the cooking time a little. Our oven heated quickly tonight! However, I keep my meat thermometer handy, so once they looked ready and tested ready, I just pulled them out.
  • I've taken to purchasing "garlic in a jar" from the grocery store. Fresh garlic is hard to find around here. This garlic is fresh and already peeled. However, they cram as many cloves as possible into the small jar, so sometimes you get really thin and tiny cloves. I used ten small cloves for this meal.
  • I also added a tablespoon of garlic powder to the marinade. I think by now we all know that I can't make anything without using garlic powder. :-)
  • I'm still waiting on my planted herbs to fill out and get a little larger. No "fresh" rosemary at the time...le sigh. I used two heaping tablespoons of dried rosemary, and I thought it tasted great! I loved the flavor in the background! Graham and rosemary are still learning to like one another, so next time I'll probably tone it down a little and use just 1 T.
  • About halfway through cooking, I brushed the wings with some of the boiled marinade. I really wanted some tender wings.
  • I marinated only two hours, but with this marinade: the longer, the better! Next time I might try an overnight or all day marinade to enhance the flavor.
  • The sesame and parsley is just a garnish. You could totally leave them out--I almost wish I did! If you've got "texture issues" it's probably best to leave them off.
  • These were sooooooo good and soo tender! Graham loved them, I loved them, and I think they're perfect for tailgating or parties.


  1. Glad you both liked them! Thanks for the recognition!

  2. This sounds delicious! I can't wait to try it!

  3. So, someone else has a crush on Giada! I am constantly recording her shows. Joe likes to watch her for "other reasons". (Men.) I've made a citrus chicken that Joe and I really like that was on her program. Between her and Paula, I found so many dishes we liked!


Why, hello there! Thanks for visiting. Have something to share? ::points down::