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The taste of March Madness: Try these alternative chicken wing recipes while enjoying the NCAA tournament.

By Donna Zitter Bordelon

It’s March Madness! Five seconds to go. You’re down one — up against the full-court press. Do you trust your point guard to take it straight to the hoop? Do you put the ball into the hands of your outside threat for a 15-footer? Do you dish it to the big man in the low post? If you answered “none of the above,” you are like me. To be honest, I needed “an assist” with this first paragraph because I’m not that savvy on b-ball lingo. But I do know there’s no good/bad time to eat a chicken wing during the NCAA Tournament.

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Here are a couple of alternative wing recipes, along with a recipe for the original Buffalo delicacy that made the price of chicken wings soar after Teressa Bellissimo served them in 1968 at Buffalo, New York’s Anchor Bar.

For the following recipes: Cut wings at joints and save tips to use in soup/stock.

BUFFALO CHICKEN WINGS

2 lbs. chicken wings (Rinse wings and pat dry)

Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of salt. Refrigerate wings while making the sauce.

Sauce:

1/2 cup Franks Red Hot sauce

5 Tbsp. butter

2 tsp. apple cider vinegar

1 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

In a large pan, combine the hot sauce, butter, vinegar, onion powder, garlic powder and cayenne, and heat until butter is melted but before mixture boils. Stir and set aside.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Spray foil lightly with oil.

Pat wings dry and arrange them on baking sheet.

Bake for 20 minutes. Turn wings over.

Continue to bake for 20 minutes or until juices are clear.

Broil wings a few minutes, watching carefully.

Remove wings to the saucy pot and toss them, coating on all sides. Allow wings to rest a few minutes, and toss again.

Transfer to serving plate.

Good served with carrot and celery sticks and the following dressing.

Blue Cheese Dressing: ¾ cup mayonnaise, ⅛ cup vinegar, 1 Tbsp. sugar, ¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp. sour cream, 1 garlic clove minced and ½ cup crumbled blue cheese. Mix well.

GLAZED MUSTARD WINGS

2 lbs. chicken wings (Rinse wings and pat dry)

Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of salt. Refrigerate wings while making the sauce.

Sauce:

3 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp. brown mustard

1/4 cup honey

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

3/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

In a bowl, combine the mustards, honey, vinegar and pepper flakes. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Spray foil lightly with oil.

Pat wings dry and arrange them on baking sheet.

Bake for 20 minutes. Turn wings over and continue to bake for 20 minutes or until juices are clear.

Broil for a few minutes, watching carefully.

Remove wings to the bowl and toss them, thoroughly coating. Allow wings to rest a few minutes, and toss again.

Transfer to serving plate.

HONEY LIME WINGS

2 lbs. chicken wings (Rinse wings and pat dry)

Marinade:

2 limes, juiced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tbsp. rice vinegar

1 tsp. hot pepper flakes

2 Tbsp. creamy peanut butter

2/3 cup honey

In a small bowl, mix together the lime juice, garlic, vinegar, pepper flakes and peanut butter.

Put wings into a plastic bag and add the marinade.

Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line baking sheet with foil.

Remove wings from marinade and arrange on pan. Scoop out garlic pieces and sprinkle on wings.

Bake for 20 minutes. Turn wings over. Continue to bake for 20 minutes or until juices are clear.

Drizzle honey on wings.

Broil wings for 2–3 minutes, watching carefully. Remove wings to serving plate. Pour off honey residue from pan drippings and use for dipping sauce.

Eat well, live long, enjoy! ••

(Ques­tions or tips can be sent to Donna Zit­ter Bor­de­lon at Whats-cook-inNEPhilly@gmail.com or in care of the Times, 2 Executive Campus, Suite 400, Cherry Hill, NJ 08002)

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