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Thursday, October 20


In all of my young-adult and adult life, I’ve always had a car. Even while living closer to Washington DC for college my parents gave me a car (mostly so I would come home in the weekends and not go to DC.) Same goes for him. All of his young-adult and adult years had some mode of transportation that he called his own. Briefly when he first arrived in United States for graduate school he did not have a car but that didn’t last long. When family visited from India he bought a car to travel with them. So the unusualness is this is the first time in our lives neither of us has a car. Thankful to a very well built public transportation infrastructure, we haven’t had a need for a car. Once in a while, when we need to buy a large piece of furniture we wish for one but other than those times we love not having one (and its maintenance). Which leads me to walking. Walking a lot and often. We walk everywhere. And we enjoy it. Not only is this good for the environment, it’s great for our waist lines. Together, we’ve lost 30 pounds or 14 kilograms since moving to Germany. This is also unusual because in United States I paid gym membership for years to go regularly and never saw weight loss results. So this walking thing has multiple benefits.

Then the other unusual thing, when we lived in United States, I didn’t care much for wings. They were fine, once in a blue moon but I never had the craving for them. The husband on the other hand was a complete different scenario. There was a wing place close to work and often he and his coworkers went there for happy hour and “dinner”. I never understood how wings can be sufficient for dinner, maybe having many wings and a lot of beer makes a complete meal? I digress. So never having a craving for wimpy piece of meat I was surprised to learn there isn’t one restaurant in town that serves tasty wings. What’s the saying about ‘you always want what you can’t have?’ That was me few days ago, I was craving wings, especially since I knew I couldn’t have them. I asked few vendors at the farmers market and found them.

So I made this recipe with some adaptations and I am renaming it “so good we don’t have time to take pictures wings

1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns, crushed and chopped finely
1 teaspoon kosher salt
12 chicken wings, split into drummettes and wingettes
2 tablespoons butter
1 garlic clove, grated or finely minced
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons Sriracha

Preheat oven to 400°F.

In a small container, combine Sichuan peppercorns and salt. Sprinkle over both sides of the chicken wings. On a foil-lined, greased baking sheet, add chicken wings. Place in the oven for 10 minutes, turn and bake for 10 more minutes or until almost cooked-through.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add minced garlic, soy sauce, rice vinegar and Sriracha. Whisk well to combine. Cook for 1 more minute and then remove the pan from heat.

Transfer chicken wings and Sriracha-butter mixture into a bowl. Using tongs, mix together until wings are liberally covered with sauce. Return coated wings to the foil-lined baking sheet and place in the oven for 6- 8 minutes or until browned.

Serve immediately

As soon as the wings came out of the oven, we gobbled them up. I asked for feedback for future attempts and he said “I love them”. I’ve tried my hand at wings couple times but this is the first time they were this good.

And finally dessert. I rarely bake. Because I despise measuring ingredients and baking food at a specific temperature. I am a chef that cooks with my eyes, nose, ears and hands (obviously, but I like to feel how much salt or spices to add in a dish with my fingers rather than measuring.) So baked desserts are a rare form in my house. Fortunately this dessert is exactly how I like to cook, add ingredients to feel and bake for 30 minutes.

Pear Crumble
2 ripe pears
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons almonds, chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Streusel Topping:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup milk, may not use it all
Butter, at room temperature for the baking dish

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Butter a baking dish. Slice the pears and put them in a large bowl. Sprinkle over the brown sugar, flour, almonds and nutmeg and toss to coat the pears with nutmeg. Spread the pears up in a buttered baking dish.

In the same bowl, mash together the butter, brown sugar, flour, and salt with your hands. Stir in milk, a little at a time. The mixture should be sticky and crumbly. Evenly spread the mixture over the pears in the baking dish and bake until the topping is crunchy and browned and the pears are very tender, 30 to 40 minutes.

This dessert was unusually good.

(The dessert can be baked after the wings are done.)


  1. i did notice you guys looked great when we saw you in cleveland! all the walking :-) and wings ;-D

  2. Hi there,

    So I tried the pear crumble, but it didn't turn out so great. Do you happen to know what kind of pears you used? Our pears were a little flavorless. I probably did something wrong.

  3. I used the local Franken pears for the crumble. I am sad it didn't turn out great for you. I am planning to make it again so I'll share the results if they are different.

    Thanks for letting me know!