Sweet Tea-Brined Hot Chicken Wings + Smoky Romaine and Avocado Salad

After hours of scanning recipes and trying to figure out what in the world we were going to fix for the Super Bowl, we settled on wings and salad (plus an unpictured dip).

And while the Panthers did not pull off a “W,” we had a true Sunday Funday and enjoyed ourselves immensely.

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We popped open a bottle of a special anniversary bubbles by my favorite wine maker Iron Horse.  This bottle is amazing – 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay.  It was peachy in color and delicious.  I’m so glad I have a few more bottles stored away for later.

As for the food, we had wings and salad.  

We started prepping the wings the day before by mixing together a brine of sweet tea, onion and lemon along with garlic and cracked black pepper.  I actually combined two different recipes to get our final result.  Here is the recipe for the brine.  On Sunday morning, we removed the wings from the brine and dried them off with a paper towel and then placed them back into the fridge uncovered on a baking sheet so they could completely air dry.  When we were ready to eat, we tossed the wings in some canola oil and then tossed them with the spice rub.  The rub is a combination of ground cayenne, chili powder, garlic powder, paprika, black pepper and salt.  The wings baked at 400 degrees for 40 minutes (flipping halfway through).

The wings were insanely crispy and full of flavor thanks to the brine and the rub.  We dipped the wings into a homemade ranch dressing.

As for a little bit of greens, a smoky romaine and avocado salad.  This salad could not be easier to assemble and the dressing is scrumptious.  In a bowl, toss together chopped romaine, a diced avocado and a sliced shallot.  Then drizzle with a dressing made with red wine vinegar, olive oil, agave, garlic, salt and smoked paprika.

The salad was fresh yet smoky, light yet full of flavor.

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And now that the Super Bowl is over, it’s time to plan our Valentine’s Day menu….

 

 

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