Disney’s ‘Ohana Coriander Wings

I know, I know…more wings…

But these are baked. And they have coriander, my favorite spice. And they are sticky.  I love sticky, crispy, spicy wings so much better then drippy sauce wings.  I’d say they are healthy, but really they are just baked, healthier at least.

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We had these wings last year when we stayed at Disney’s Polynesian Resort for the Food Blogger Conference.  They were one of the many highlights of the weekend.  I was reminded of their finger licking perfection when I came across the recipe in the Cast Member Magazine called Walt Disney World Eyes and Ears. 

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So in case you need another wing recipe- give this recipe a try, it is the official recipe from WDW, owned by them in fact!  These wings look on the dark side, its the sugar in that turns them, no burnt flavor 🙂

For the Wings:

  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground paprika
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 4 tablespoon canola oil
  • 4 pounds chicken wings or drummettes

For the Coriander Sauce

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

 Procedure: 

For Wings:

  1. Preheat oven to 500 F.  Line a baking sheet with 1-inch sides with foil.
  2. Combine all ingredients except chicken in a large glass bowl.  Add chicken and toss to coat well.
  3. Spread the seasoned wings on the baking sheet and roast them until browned, about 35 minutes.
  4. To serve, toss with wing sauce.

 For Coriander Sauce:

  1. While the wings are baking, combine the ingredients in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until liquid reduces to a syrup, about 5 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and keep warm.

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I’d like to blame Sir Wes for this repetitive wing recipe chapter I seem to be working on, but I have to take some ownership in it. Wings are good. Simple.  They were balanced perfectly with a Back Forty Naked Pig Pale Ale…if your wondering!

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Port Wine Cherry Cordial Cookies- #FBCookieSwap

Coffee and/ or cereal for breakfast, on your own for lunch and cookies for dinner.  This was our household meal plan for the last few weeks.  What outstanding timing for The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap to happen, it was the same time Sir Wes and I were both barreling thru our busiest weeks of the year.  Three deliveries of cookies landed on our doorstep, perfectly synched to provide our nourishment thru Crazytown.

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Cookies for dinner, for two weeks, and I am not even embarrassed.  These gems were fantastic.  Rachel from Kvell in the Kitchen made us Iced Whiskey Ginger Cookies (great week for whiskey), we got a batch of Chai Snickerdoodles that I loved (a couple made it into my morning coffee) and Traci from Burnt Apple’s cookies landed last- melt in your mouth butterscotch delights.

I recruited a few chefs that I work with to help me brainstorm what kind of cookie to make, the idea list got pretty long and I have a few of them planned in the future- but we finally landed on the perfect cookie to sip a glass of wine with.  Chocolate Cherry Cordial Cookies, made with port wine, 70% dark chocolate chunks and sun dried cherries. 

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Inspired by a couple of great chefs and slightly modified from the Food Network

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup good quality cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup port wine
  • 6 ounces dark chocolate, broken into chunks
  • 1/2 cup dried tart cherries

 Directions

 Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

 Combine flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda in a bowl. In a bowl of an electric mixer, or with a handheld mixer, combine butter and sugars until fluffy. Add egg, vanilla, and wine and combine. Slowly in batches add the flour mixture until just combined. Fold in the chocolate and cherries. On a nonstick cookie sheet, place a heaping tablespoon of dough for each cookie about 2 inches apart from each other. Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until tops are still soft looking but edges look firm. 

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The cookie swap this year was a ton of fun- I can’t wait to see all the posts and get my cookie baking on!!  Thanks to Lindsay from Love and Olive Oil and Julie from The Little Kitchen for organizing such an enormous event.  And a huge shout out to the participants that all supported a great cause- Cookies for Cancer.  I can’t wait to see how much The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap collected for such an important cause! 

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Cheers to all the cookie monsters out there- and though it isn’t a diet I would recommend for any length of time- remember, cookies for dinner are OK.  (sometimes)

2012 Epcot Party For The Senses and A Little Magic of Healthy Living Wrap Up

This year’s Epcot International Food and Wine Festival has been quite the ride.  Full of great food, long days, many laughs and a ton of “growth”.  We had amazing Visiting Chefs join the #DisneyChefs family, and even more Home Team Chefs participate.  Every Saturday was a culinary adventure during the Party For The Senses, always giving a great learning.

The Chefs were all great, they grabbed on to the Disney Magic and gave it back tenfold.

So many exceptional, creative dishes were enjoyed by 1000’s!

Of course the drinks were equally enjoyable, some weeks they were just what the doctor ordered!

Our on Park Event Operations Chefs hit home runs more than a couple of times!  Chef Joe Bonanno was a crowd favorite!

We had quite a few other events then Party For The Senses- The Magic of Healthy Living being one of them-

Celebrity Chefs Brian Frick, Andrew Zimmerman and the Voltaggio Brothers joined us for a night.

Thanks Michael for pausing for me to take a picture-

I love the family affair!!

Jonathon Sawyer, of the Greenhouse Tavern in Cleveland Ohio, definitely won for most nicest/bad@## Chef in my opinion- Food was amazeballs and he and his team were super fun and really enjoyed what they were doing.

Chef Judi and her PEO team were awesome- They had a truckload of fun and delivered a great scallop dish.

Chef Christine and 1200 Potato Rings.  Great to see some things never change, never settle.

This Sauerkraut Bread Pudding was my favorite- had nothing to do with all the Contemporary hats.

A few of my new Chef friends!

We had to celebrate Halloween with a few cute cupcakes.  And I did manage to get one picture in front of the camera.

The Cirque entertainment was captivating and the room set was top notch sexy.

We did manage to have some fun-

The famed Chef Joe Rod (Rodriguez) came back to PEO from Norway (the real country, not Epcot Norway), and was the highlight of the week.

Last but not least- Louie- the man that makes things happen- one way or another!

Just a short visual summary of the last few weeks- Truly hard to sum up the experience, but it certainly is one I wouldn’t trade.  Just happy to be part of an amazing team!!

Party For The Senses – October 6th 2012

The Party For The Senses is a hard ticket event that happens every Saturday night during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival.   Chefs from across the world come to participate as well as many of Disney’s talented Chefs.  It is an event that guests look forward to all year, as well as the Disney Cast.  The planning for these events is extreme and detailed, starting before the final event of the year is even finished.  Happily I am getting a first hand look at these event this year, being on the Park Events team.

Our Front of the House partners have taken the room to a even cooler level- the vipe of the Wine View Lounge is straight up “swank”.

The lighting of the room and the even the tables is a perfect complement to the creativity of the food and wine being showcased.

Love these displays!

It is always great to talk to someone excited about what they are offering, displaying their passion for the products.

It is a pretty surreal experience to be around so many talented chefs- and the way we all engaged was even better!  I walked away this weekend with a ton of ideas!

Chef Jessy and the talented team held everyone together, delivering a perfect event!

I was told the reveal was something not to be missed- and it was extreme!  The guests were certainly excited!

Our own Chef Damon Lauder used our new Cvap to cook Pasture Prime Pork Jowls.  Was worried for a bit for not having enough, they were so popular!

Celina Tio, a long time participant of “Party” knows what she is doing- perfect flavors and perfect amount of product!  The Tio team was a pleasure to have in the kitchen for a few days!

All of the participating Chefs and teams delivered flavorful and creative dishes.

AND….they had fun, kids included!

They also worked hard! The King and Queen of Pork included!

Party for the Senses is always a blast, seeing friends from wayback and creating brand new friendships…even thru twitter.

It has been such a great experience to be a part of the #EpcotFoodFestival this year, so fun to get to know so many talented Chefs, and to support their success!

We did have a small degree of celebrity oogleing, but for the most part we kept it cool…

Some of the best looking and tasting desserts had…I renamed the sphere, “Noahsphere” in honor of Chef Noah French, who made it.

I guess it is clear that I lean towards the chocolate desserts.

I was captivated by Chef John Hui and the sculpture he did.  I spent a few minutes gawking as he nonchalantly threw together a sugar hummingbird.  Walked away amazed, after I told him, I completely got it- and thanks for the lesson, I’ll throw one together on my next day off.  He laughed.  and then laughed again.

What a great few weeks it has been, hard, but so worth it.  I can’t wait to see the rest!

View from Behind the DisneyBog!

The Happiest Place on Earth kicked off the 17th Annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Presented by Chase on Friday!  This is a festival that is eagerly anticipated by food and wine lovers all year.  It is a not to be missed event for anyone that loves culinary experiences, wine tasting or any Disney fan.  The festival runs thru November 12th this year, a bonus of one more day than last year! 

The opening day and weekend is filled with special events and activities for guests to enjoy- one in particular which I was looking forward to for weeks was a reception in the Ocean Spray Cranberry Bog.

I have loved work the last 10 months since I joined the Disney Parks Event Catering team- we have had so many magical events that thrill and delight our guests, but some experiences are still extraordinary to even the most senior veterans of Park Events.  I have to admit, my jaw dropped when I realized that the Ocean Spray reception was actually going to be in the Ocean Spray #DisneyBog.  That is just plain Crazy Town to me…

We had first class servers offering the guests small bites and cocktails.  They were so great to suit up in the waders and their gracious service really added to the magic of the experience! 

The menu was to incorporate Ocean Spray Craisins® and Cranberries, and it was simple for the Chef to get creative with the red beauties.   From breads to meats, butters and desserts they offer a such a versatility, so fun to play with in the kitchen!  One of my favorite recipes for cranberries is Cranberry Salsa.

The team put together great recipes for the items which the guests received to at the end of the evening.  Hopefully they will take them home and delight their own guests!

Craisins® Infused Five Spice Char Kobe Beef

Rock Seared Free Range Chicken with Craisins® Vodka Caviar

Artisan Cheese Stuffed Craisins® Brioche

Cranberry and Sea Salt Cured Wild Salmon

Cranberry Marinated Gold Beets with Kumquat Jalapeño Marmalade

The Cranberry Beets were our favorite, they looked like petite sliced peaches.  We cut the beet in a cylinder shape and then submerged it in crushed fresh cranberries to let the flavor and color absorb.  This is a method I will surely use again, they are so pretty! 

The waders were lined up for the guests to pull on before they jumped in the bog. 

This is definitely a high fashion jumpsuit, would have loved to gotten in one of these numbers!! 

Meanwhile the focus went to the Cranberry Inspired Cocktails that were being served!

Cranberry Bomber, Cranberry Martinis, O Fizz, Cape Codder were mixed by our bartenders and enjoyed by all.

The storms were off in the distance, flirting to give us a downpour, but with a stroke of luck, the weather held up.  The sunset came and went and the guests ate, drank, and learned about cranberries and the versatility of the treasure, all right in the comfort of the Ocean Spray Cranberry Bog. 

This reception was one that I will add to my Disney Catering tales.  The experience for the guests was once in a lifetime for many, and it certainly was phenomenal for the team that put it together! 

All From Florida Dinner Event Menu

This is a great time of year to live in Florida, with the summer heat and steady rains comes wonderful produce.  Our farmers are plentiful and talented, bringing us the chance to create phenomenal dishes, all from within the state.  As Chefs, we strive to use local sourcing and organic when we can, we want to educate our guests as well as feeding them.  

We had a young, hip group in a few weeks ago, and were asked to produce a menu to WOW this well-traveled group.  When it comes down to it, the beautiful produce and meats we can get, really stand on their own, simple speaks loudly here.  That was the focus we drove toward, keep an organic, local and sustainable menu, featuring creative presentation and simplified, screamingly good flavors.

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It is a pleasure to feed people interested in food, in what we do- like any profession, when you come across someone interested in what you do, it is very reaffirming. 

The group loved it all, the food, the lighting, the lounge feel, and the entertainment was amazing.  If you ever get a chance to see, meet or hear Anita Goodstory- you will not regret, I had belly cramps from holding in my giggles.  What a personality! 

Cheers to eating local, supporting small farmers and having the tastiest, freshest ingrediants available!

“Be Our Guest”- Standing on the Other Side at the Food Blog Forum

I was fortunate to attend the Food Blog Forum last weekend, which came to Orlando through the diligence of Julie Deily (The Little Kitchen)and Dawn Viola (Dawn Viola), and the  sponsorship of Walt Disney World, Kitchen Aid, La Creuset, OXO, Whole Foods and many more.   It was my first food blogging conference and quite frankly, it left me with an overwhelming sense of encouragement, both personally and professionally. I was able to pick up great tips and soak in the group’s creative energy; I was a sponge. 

The weekend was a unique one for me,  as the event was held at Walt Disney World.  I mentioned in my previous post that I had helped plan a few of the FBF events, writing menus, station design and layout, which led to my excitement.  The entire Disney team rallied to make these events unforgettable – chefs from across Walt Disney World happily volunteered to participate.  The Food Blog Forum Orlando was destined to be the tops.

Of all my credentials, this one is my favorite!

We spent the weekend at the Poly –Cast Member lingo for the Walt Disney Polynesian Resort—keep reading you will be an insider soon.  We were welcomed by the famous Little Lady Laura, who I spent a few days with when I started working in Park Events.  She was fabulous at connecting with all of the guests and helping to create a seamless event (I did see her slip down the Poly poolside, so rest assured, she had a blast).

The Poly Lobby

After a long week of “getting it done” at work, Sir Wes and I happily enjoyed the season’s first poolside sangria before I went to the reception at The Grand (AKA- Disney’s Grand Floridian).  I knew the reception would be the perfect way to start the weekend- it was held outside at Summerhouse, overlooking the lake and the pool.  Beautiful weather, fantastic service and food that would be talked about all weekend!  I knew how great it would be, the dishes were flavorful and elegantly presented.  I actually even tried the beef short ribs (for those who are not aware, I stay away from pork and beef). Just a bite, though – Sir Wes wanted to make sure the flavor he added came out right.  Kudos to Chef Douglas, Chef Larry, Sir Wes and the talented Grand Culinary Team.

Perfect weather!

Before sunrise, the bloggers were on their way to Epcot for the day-long forum, but before the speakers started, we broke bread.  And here is where I start to get proud- it was AWESOME.  The Park Event Operation (PEO) team delivered a St. Patrick’s Day Eye Opener that continued the culinary train started the previous night at the Grand. 

The speakers were captivating!

The morning was spent listening to inspirational talks by Jaden and Scott Hair of Steamy Kitchen, Dianne and Todd of White on Rice Couple, David Leite, who spoke about Bigger and Bad Ass Posts, and Dawn Viola, who rounded  this talented group. They all offered so much great advice, inspiration, and constructive criticism that I’m sure you could not get out of a book. My scribble-scrabbled notes were miles long. 

I snuck out a few minutes early so I could get a sneak peak, and I felt like a child waiting to give mom a present- I just couldn’t wait for everyone to see.   The room set up was fantastic, full of bells and whistles.  

The team did a wonderful job setting the stations and the tables-  plenty of room to accommodate 100+ bloggers and their huge cameras.  I told one of the chefs before the guests arrived- “wait until you see the mass of camera’s about to walk into the room”!  The “Healthful Taste of Disney” lunch was recorded by many as the most creative and flavorful meal they had experienced.  How could I not be grinning from ear to ear!?!?

The Chefs were creative and healthful, they also were able to accomodate so many different allegeries and dietary concerns, which, by itself, is magical for some guests!

After the lunch, we had roundtables of small groups which was great for getting a ton of my questions answered. I was also comforted to see the other Bloggers had similar questions and doubts.  And then came my favorite part, a food styling and photographing demo from Aran of Cannelle et Vanille and Diane Cu of White on Rice Couple.  There are a few reasons I started blogging, but the biggest was my love of taking photographs and wanting to grow that hobby.  Aran’s photographs are like Food Ballet – colors and textures just dance and they leave you feeling enriched.  Just beautiful.

Inspiring!

The forum broke and Bloggers spread thru Epcot to enjoy the remainder of the day before gathering back to a dessert party with a phenomenal viewing of the fireworks. The desserts were all amazing, but the talk of the event was the Guinness Ice Cream with Bacon Brittle- I’m thinking of getting the recipe for you soon!   The following morning was a brunch hosted by Whole Foods Orlando, which I was unable to attend. You can, however, read about it by searching Twitter for #FBFORL and see for yourself how big of a hit it was. 

Kudos to Pam and Karen!

It is difficult to sum up the feeling I had when I drove home. I took so much away from the weekend and I am certain that it will impact my blog, my work and my life.  I shared with my leaders and peers at work just how much all the bloggers enjoyed everything.  They felt Walt Disney World went over the top, and showed a tremendous amount of gratitude.  The reactions of the guests at the Food Blog Forum is what we, as cast members, take away; to be able to take a part in creating this type of magic, is an honor.  A lot of hours and hard work were put into this event and I was fortunate enough to see firsthand how magical it is for our WDW guests.  I wish every Cast Member was able to experience how impactful their efforts are, it is a gift that will resonate with me every day.