Party Food & A Salad

Chicken Wings & Salad I sort of love chicken wings! No one ever wants to order them out with me and I really never do either because of the guilt. They are nasty-good. But, ever so often, I find some chicken wings in a store from a well-sourced place and I bring them home and Grant makes some for me. He prepares them a little bit healthier than what we’d find in a restaurant. They are way tastier, too! I thought it’d be a good time to share it with it being Super Bowl Weekend and all (Go Seahawks!).

Big Smokey’s BBQ Chicken Wings
Dry Rub:

  • ½ cup Cane Sugar
  • ½ cup Sea Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 4 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 18-24 Chicken Wings

Mix rub ingredients together and rub liberally over chicken wings. Cover and refrigerate overnight.


  • ½ Cup Cider Vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp Butter
  • 1 Cup Ketchup
  • 4 Tbsp Guava Paste (or 3 Tbsp Molasses)
  • 3 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Salt
  • 2 Tbsp Black Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Mustard
  • 2 Tbsp Worchestershire Sauce
  • Tabasco Sauce to taste

Warm all ingredients together in a sauce over medium low heat until guava paste breaks up and melts (approx 15 minutes) then put aside.

Preheat oven to 375. Heat a large iron skillet on the stove over medium high heat. Add a tablespoon of bacon fat or oil of choice. When fat is smoking, place wings in pan, and cook until golden brown on both sides. Take off of heat and baste with the sauce and cook in the oven for 25 minutes basting and turning a few times. Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes. Enjoy!

Chicken Wings

Now, sometimes we keep some of the Big Smokey’s Dry Rub mixture up in the cupboard but the other day we ran out and I happened to have some local, Rhino Rub seasoning blend. I used that and it works great! If you live in Nashville, check it out! You can find it at The Turnip Truck.

I came up with this salad to go with the Big Smokey’s BBQ Chicken Wings and it was so delicious, we ate it three more times in the next few weeks without the chicken. Below is the original recipe and then, the two alternate vegetarian-friendly meal options.

Celery Salad

Celery & Blue Cheese Salad
Serves 2-4 (depending on serving size- whether it is a side salad or an entree)

  • 2 Carrots, chopped
  • 2 Celery Ribs, chopped
  • 4 Radishes, sliced
  • 1 Shallot, finely sliced
  • Small handful of fresh Parsley, chopped
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Sherry Vinegar
  • Romaine Hearts (1 small head or half of a large head)
  • Olive Oil
  • 2 oz Blue Cheese (Point Reyes or Maytag), crumbled

Mix the chopped carrots, celery, shallot, and parsley in a big bowl. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and vinegar (not too much, maybe a Tbsp or so). Mix together well. Wash and dry the romaine. Chop into small pieces and add to the mix. Add more vinegar to taste, drizzle with a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil, and sprinkle the blue cheese crumbs on top.

The very next night, I needed to have this salad again and we still had all the ingredients but we didn’t want to have more chicken wings so instead, I toasted some mixed raw nuts in an iron skillet. As they began to get slightly toasted, I mixed in about ½ Tbsp melted butter with a tsp or two of the same dry-rub spices Grant had made the BBQ wings with. I removed the nuts from the pan and let them cool in a bowl. Then I tossed them into the salad above.

Celery Salad wNuts

And then the following week, I made the same salad (without the nuts) and served it with roasted acorn squash which I again seasoned the same way as the chicken wings and the nuts had been. I simply cut the squash in half, put a pat of butter in each half and sprinkled with the dry-rub spice blend. Then, I roasted some seeds- sunflower and pumpkin- in an iron skillet dry. Once they started to get hot, I added in about a teaspoon of maple syrup and a dash of sea salt. I topped the cooked squash with these little salty and sweet seeds. It was delicious and pretty nutritious.

Acorn Squash

Happy eating y’all!


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