Showing posts with label dinner party chicken. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dinner party chicken. Show all posts

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remembering 9/11 Heroes with a Special Firehouse Recipe and #Giveaway from Cleo Coyle

"The most stirring symbol of man's 
humanity to man is in a fire truck." 

~ Kurt Vonnegut

September 11, 2001 was a devastating day of loss for this country and especially New York, the city my husband and I have called home for more than thirty years. Over 2,000 of our fellow citizens perished that day. More people lost their lives on the hijacked planes; in the wreckage at the Pentagon; and in a field in Pennsylvania.

Sixty of New York’s Finest (our police and port authority officers) sacrificed their lives, along with paramedics, bystanders, and office workers who died while trying to save others. But it was New York’s Bravest, our firemen, who suffered the most devastating losses of all. 

343 firefighters left for work that morning and never came home. 343 ran in while others rushed out. Many were senior members of the department. In one case, an entire company was nearly wiped out.

When the smoke finally cleared, hundreds of funerals were held all over New York for these heroes who answered their last alarms. At times, the grief seemed almost unbearable, but—as an example to us all—the New York City Fire Department worked to replenish its ranks and its spirits. 

A recipe might seem a trivial thing to post today, but below is a very special recipe. It appeared in a cookbook that was sold a few years ago to raise money for a firefighter's fund named in honor of Terry Farrell, one of those 343 firefighters who lost their lives on 9/11. Marc and I bought a number of copies, and we are happy to share one of the tasty recipes in that cookbook with you today.

If that book were still available, we would share a link for purchasing it and give one away this week. Unfortunately, it's no longer in print, but we do have another idea to help raise money in memory of those 343...


We are were happy to make a contribution in the form of a little comment giveaway on this post. The prize is the winner's choice of a Fire Department cap here).

Thanks to everyone for commenting on this post!
The winner of the hat-of-choice, by random draw,
was "servedogmom" - She selected the FDNY knit cap
and the purchase will benefit the FDNY Foundation. 

~ Cleo

And now for today's recipe...

Cleo Coyle has a partner in
crime-writing—her husband.
Learn about their books
by clicking here and here.

Baked Firehouse

Parmesan Wings

(No breading!)

Don’t let the word "firehouse" fool you. These are not "hot and spicy" wings. They are a fragrant herb-and-Parmesan-encrusted delight.

They'll make your kitchen smell as heavenly as a pizzeria, but there's no breading so they're gluten-free. They're a great finger-food dinner for a Friday or Saturday night and a wonderful nosh for parties.

Thanks to 
Police Officer Bill Havens of the Escondido Police Department for the inspiration. We slightly adapted his "Baked Hot Wings" recipe, which he contributed to The Terry Farrell Firefighters Fund California Firehouse Cookbook. 

The ingredients are unpretentious, the combination superb. You can serve these wings with a dipping sauce (we include a suggestion below), but it’s not necessary. As PO Havens says himself, they are amazing as is.
Click here for the recipe
in PDF form.
To download this recipe in a PDF document that you can print, save, or share, click here

Makes about 20 wing pieces


3 pounds fresh chicken wings

1 cup good quality grated Parmesan cheese  (go for the real stuff, not a commercial brand with filler) 

1 Tablespoon dried parsley

2 Tablespoons dried minced garlic (not powdered)

1 Tablespoon dried oregano

2 teaspoons sweet paprika

1 teaspoon sea salt, ground fine

½ teaspoon ground white pepper

6-7 Tablespoons butter (see note below on replacing with olive oil)


(1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a shallow baking sheet with foil and coat lightly with nonstick spray or oil. Cut up the chicken wings into separate pieces, discarding tips. Wash the chicken and pat it very dry. Set aside. 

(2) In a large mixing bowl, blend the Parmesan, parsley, minced garlic, oregano, paprika, salt, and pepper and whisk with a fork until ingredients are thoroughly combined.

(3) Melt butter on stove or in microwave. One piece at a time, dip the clean and dry chicken wings in the melted butter, then roll in the cheese and herb mix, making sure to coat completely. Note that as butter cools it may become difficult to work with. In that case, simply warm it up again and continue coating the chicken.

 (4) Arrange the chicken pieces on the foil-lined baking sheet and bake for one hour. (Do remember to coat that foil with non-stick spray or oil.) Do not turn or disturb the chicken as it cooks. When finished, remove wings quickly while still warm. If chicken pieces cool too much, they may stick.

**Can I use a rack? It's not necessary, but sure, you can use one. The rack will lift the chicken slightly above the pan and allow fat to drip down. It will also give a slightly more crunchy and uniformly browned coating. Be sure to coat the rack with nonstick spray or lightly oil before using. Place rack over a shallow, foil-lined pan. Cooking time may be a little less than one hour.

***Olive oil instead of butter? You can do that, too. The results are not quite as amazing as butter, but they're pretty darn good nonetheless! To replace the butter, use about 1/3 cup olive oil instead, warming it first to reduce viscosity. Note: If you are using a rack, the oil may drip and smoke toward the end of cooking. (Our smoke alarm actually went off when we gave the oil a try. Then again, these are firehouse wings!)


Giveaway to Benefit FDNY Foundation...

This drawing is now over.
Congrats to "servedogmom" for
winning the random drawing.

Finally, for those men and women who continue to put on
a uniform every day and risk their lives to protect ours,
we send out a very big…

Thank you!

~ Cleo Coyle

New York Times bestselling author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries

Yes, this is me, Cleo (aka Alice). 
Friend me on facebook here.
Follow me on twitter here
Learn about our books here.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Is it time for a party?

This month I am celebrating several things including an Agatha nomination for my short story "So Much in Common", the arrival of my author’s copies of The Busy Woman’s Guide to Murder: a Charlotte Adams mystery and a birthday. What better time to make a night of it? A dinner party would be perfect. However, experience tells me that the dinner parties where I am comfortable and relaxed are the most fun for my guests. To make sure this happens, I like easy, reliable dishes that can be prepared ahead and cooked at the last minute. Here’s one of my favorites. It’s been a hit at parties chez Maffini since I discovered it. Of course, like all of you, I like to make a few modifications to suit my creative urges. One of the things that I love about this chicken is the tantalizing aroma as it bakes. The cranberries and thyme combine with the ricotta and the crispy chicken skin to make your guests mouths water while waiting for dinner.

Dinner party chicken with ricotta, dried cranberries and thyme

6 bone-in chicken breasts (with skin)

¾ cup ricotta cheese

1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries

¼ cup dried bread crumbs

1 egg, beaten

2 tsp dried thyme

Salt and pepper to suit yourself

2 tsp butter and 2 tsp of oil

Combine cheese, cranberries, bread crumbs, egg, time and seasonings in a bowl.

Make a 2 – 3 inch slit on the side of each chicken breast, deep enough to put filling.

Stuff 3 or 4 tablespoons of the filling into each chicken breast.

You can prepare the recipe to this point and refrigerate the chicken until an hour before you plan to serve it.

Preheat the over to 350 degrees.

Heat the oil and butter in a non-stick pan and brown the top of the chicken breasts.
Transfer to a baking dish lined with aluminum foil. I use a jelly roll pan.

Bake for 45 minutes or until cooked through. Don’t overbake! It will smell wonderful while cooking. If there's any left over, it will be great - hot or cold - the next day.

I like to serve this chicken with simple Arborio rice and a crisp green salad, but it works with whatever easy party sides I feel like. After all, you want to relax and raise a celebratory glass. Next post, I'll share the dessert (code word chocolate)

What's your favorite party dish? Or easy side dish?

April 5th will launch The Busy Woman's Guide to Murder. In her fifth outing, Charlotte Adams is offering time management tips while solving a crime and righting some old injustices. Charlotte says, "Forget about doing things right. Concentrate on doing the right things." I think I'll cook her something nice!

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