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Italians tend to be pretty serious about their food. And mealtime is about much more than simply providing fuel for the body.
An important part of the Italian culture, meals are a celebration that honors the importance of family, friends, and history with food (and wine) – the glue that binds it all together.
Lunchtime is still considered the most important meal of the day, and Sunday lunch is a time to spend with family and friends that can easily last all afternoon.
Along with multiple courses of food, a healthy dose of conviviality and camaraderie are essential ingredients – with all to be enjoyed at a relaxed, leisurely pace.
A dish like these delicious wings would be served at lunch or dinner, either as part of an appetizer, or antipasto, selection.
Or, they might be served as the second part of the main course when meat, poultry, or fish is dished up – following a plate of risotto, pasta, or a hearty minestrone soup.
The perfect finger food, they’re ideal for casual dinner parties, a backyard BBQ, buffet-style dining, tailgating, watching the big game on TV, or served cold in a picnic basket.
No matter the setting, they’re always a party favorite!
This Italian-themed marinade brings a robust taste to the table – garlicky and rich with Mediterranean flavors.
The use of freshly picked herbs truly makes this dish, so don’t skimp and try to substitute with dried! Although they’re acceptable in a pinch, the flavor won’t be quite the same.
This soak is delicious for chicken breasts or thighs as well. Or you could even try leaving off the garnish of freshly grated Parmesan cheese for a dairy-free version – try this tasty soak to marinate fish or lamb.
You could also serve a side dish of fresh focaccia bread with a small plate of olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping, and a Caesar salad with homemade dressing – or a crisp garden salad with your own tangy herb vinaigrette.
For a beverage, try pairing with an Italian table beer that’s crisp and malty. Or a juicy, medium body rosé wine would be ideal for your summertime table, or a celebration at any time of year where a cool and tasty beverage is called for.
Fantastic on the grill, these wings do equally well in the oven. Just follow the directions in the recipe below.
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 –Prepare Your Mise en Place
It’s important to get all of your ingredients, utensils, and other cooking implements and pieces of equipment ready before you start.
Measure out the olive oil, vinegar, herbs, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. I like to use freshly ground black pepper for the best flavor – a pepper grinder is a great tool to invest in to kick your cooking up a notch, if you don’t have one already.
Mince the fresh herbs and garlic.
Grate the Parmesan cheese.
Again, though it’s convenient to buy the kind that’s already grated, freshly grating your own just before use will provide the best flavor. A microplane can really come in handy for this.
Step 2 – Make the Marinade
Combine all of the ingredients except the chicken and the Parmesan in a large bowl. This will create a flavorful marinade.
Step 3 – Marinate the Wings
If you like, reserve about 1/4 cup of the marinade for brushing on the wings after they are cooked. You don’t want to use whatever’s leftover from marinating the meat, since raw chicken can harbor bacteria.
Use your hands to massage the chicken wings with the marinade until they are completely coated.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or for and up to 24 hours.
Step 4 – Bake
Preheat the oven to 400°F, and fit a baking tray with a metal rack. Place the marinated wings on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 50 minutes until the wings are crispy and golden brown.
This marinade also makes a delicious soak for grilling, or for use on other types of protein as an appetizer or entree. Try it on all of your favorites!
Step 5 – Garnish and Serve
When the wings are done, brush with reserved marinated if desired, sprinkle them right away with freshly grated Parmesan. The heat of the wings will help to melt the cheese.
Serve them up immediately!
Wing Time, Italian Style
The delicious flavors in this wing marinade can’t be beat, and the ingredients included are a tasty twist on the usual spicy and sticky options.
If you want something a bit more down-home and spicy, try our simple spicy wings recipe, for barbecuing or any time!
Whether you make them for the big game, a weekend barbecue with the family, or a weeknight dinner at home, they’re sure to satisfy.
What’s your game plan for serving up this tasty marinade on your next batch of wings, or another protein creation? Let us know in the comments below!
Photos by Felicia Lim, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. With additional writing and editing by Kendall Vanderslice and Felicia Lim.
*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Lorna Kring
Recently retired as a costume specialist in the TV and film industry, Lorna now enjoys blogging on contemporary lifestyle themes. A bit daft about the garden, she’s particularly obsessed with organic tomatoes and herbs, and delights in breaking bread with family and friends.