Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Super Bowl...a world of dips and wings

As usual, my roommates and I hosted our annual Super Bowl party this past Sunday. I'm a proud Giants fan, but the Cardinals-Steelers match up was an incredible game to watch, such a great 4th quarter. Aside from the game itself and the much anticipated half-time show (loved watching Bruce Springstein ram into the camera and laugh it off), the other focus of Super Bowl festivities tends to be the food. Football eats aren't exactly known to have a winning healthful playbook. I'm however, of the mindset that you can find balance in every situation. I think my friends would first laugh and then walk right out the door if I presented them with a 'feast' of vegetables, hummus, fat-free potato chips and fat-free cheese and crackers. Actually, I would personally be leading the charge right out the door.
My friends and I typically do potluck for the Super Bowl, so the level of healthfulness is somewhat of a toss-up. We've generally got an array of random foods, snacks, and of course, a fridge full of every beer known to humankind. This year's theme ended up being chips n' dips completely by chance. As you can see from the pictures, I think we had every kind of dip possible, from salsa to lite onion and ranch dips, black bean and guac dip, feta-sundried tomato dip, buffalo chicken dip and finally a deliciously sinful, super spicy cheese dip made with lean ground turkey. That's a whole lot of dip...and chips. No worries, being the nutritionist I am, I made sure there were fresh cut veggies on the table as well. Funny, that they were the first thing to go. I can confidently say that every one of my friends who brought dip, made an effort to lighten it up or boost the nutritional value somehow - whether by using reduced-fat sour cream (fat-free scares me), lean turkey, or vegetarian refried black beans. Maybe I'm rubbing off them?
I rounded out the table with a coveted football standby, wings. I make them every year for the big game and they're actually an amazing, pretty darn healthful addition to the whole spread. The recipe's a family secret, so, apologies, no full disclosure here. Here's the recipe, adapted...I promise you'll have people indebted to you for life, begging for more.

Mahogany Chicken Wings
1 1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 1/8 cup hoisin sauce
3 scallions, minced
6 large garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup honey
6-7 lbs free-range/organic chicken wings

clean and rinse wings, pat dry.
combine all ingredients but wings in medium saucepan. bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. allow to cool 10-15 minutes.
place wings in tupperware or glass container, pour sauce over and marinate at least 4- 6 hours or overnight.
preheat oven to 375. line two baking sheets with aluminum foil or use 2 roasting pans. distribute wings on both pans, save excess marinade for basting. bake uncovered for 1 - 1 1/2 hours, baste every 20 minutes with remaining sauce. turn wings about halfway through to brown.
cool and serve.

makes about 12 servings, 4-5 wings each.

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