Now that summer is finally here, I find myself plotting and planning weekends that my teenage boys will certainly whine and grumble over. Summer festivals and rodeos. Days spent at the beach and by the pool. Weekend jaunts to destinations yet unknown. Hours and hours and hours in the car exploring new places that we’ve never been. After all, we live in a huge province that is dotted with lakes and rivers and small towns just begging to be discovered.
However, I will probably end up doing most of these things without the kids in tow. They are now at the age where they’d rather be with their friends than their parents. Whaaaat? I know! I’m shocked. And if I’m being totally honest, I’m secretly a little relieved.
I’m sure it will be a total hardship to meander through a new town at my own pace or visit an independent lakeside gift shop without being rushed to leave. How will I ever manage to spend hours in the car alone with just my music and my own thoughts for company? And to stop at a neck of the woods family restaurant and not have to share my chicken wings with anyone? I’m not sure life is worth living.
For a little extra kick, whisk 1 teaspoon of your favorite hot sauce directly to the egg/milk mixture.
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon ground mustard
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon garlic powder
3 tablespoons milk
35 - 40 chicken wings and drumettes
vegetable oil, for frying
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, black pepper, ground mustard, cayenne pepper, oregano, and garlic powder. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk. Set aside.
Begin by dipping the chicken pieces into the flour mixture, then into the egg mixture and then back into the flour mixture until coated. Shake off any excess flour. Set the chicken pieces on a baking sheet and continue until all the chicken pieces are coated.
Pour the vegetable oil into a high sided pot. For safety sake, you do not want your oil to be more than 2″ deep, and definitely not more than halfway up the side of the pot. Heat oil to 375 F. A candy thermometer comes in handy here, but if you don’t have one, heat the oil on medium-high heat for about 5 – 7 minutes. Test your oil temperature with one of the chicken pieces. If it browns too quickly, turn the heat down to medium and wait a minute or two to start frying.
Carefully drop the chicken pieces, 4 to 5 pieces at a time, into the hot oil and fry for 6 to 7 minutes until browned and cooked through, turning once. Use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken pieces from the hot oil and place the chicken on a paper towel to drain slightly before serving. Toss or dip the wings and drumettes into your favorite sauce, or eat them naked.
My son started his first job this week. It’s a sucky job, but I’m sure everyone’s first job is sucky. I mean, my first job was cleaning houses for friends of my parents. It was Saturday mornings. Strike one. The pay was awful. Strike two. And I had to clean toilets. Strike three. To this day I HATE cleaning toilets. But it was my first real job.
Of course I’ve had a multitude of crappy jobs since that one but I think that’s par for the course. It’s part of growing up. Figuring out what you want and don’t want to do for the rest of your life. And there’s nothing like cleaning toilets to figure that one out real quick.
So he came home from his first day completely stressed out and feeling lost and overwhelmed and looking in the pantry for comfort. His go to comfort food happens to be cereal. Not just any cereal, it has to be sugar-laden, teeth rotting French Toast Crunch drowning in copious amounts of 2%.
So, like any good mother, I stocked the pantry with two boxes this week. I most definitely remember my first job.
Quick And Easy Chocolate Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
This coffee cake lives up to its name - Quick and Easy! And it's so deliciously tasty they'll never know that it all started with a cake mix!
1 box vanilla cake mix (any brand)
1 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
3 whole eggs
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Use butter or cooking spray to grease and and then lightly flour a bundt pan. Set it aside.
With an electric mixer, beat together the cake mix with the water, vegetable oil, whole eggs, egg yolk, flour, and vanilla until the batter is smooth. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and espresso powder.
Pour 1/3 of the batter into the bundt pan. Sprinkle half of the cocoa sugar mixture over the batter. Pour another 1/3 of batter over the cocoa sugar mixture. Sprinkle the other half of the cocoa sugar mixture and then pour the remainder of the batter to cover.
Use a knife to swirl the batter and sugar mixture by inserting the knife into the cake and turning the knife before pulling up. Repeat all the way around the cake.
Bake the cake for 40 - 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let the cake cool before turning it out.