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I’ve received a lot of requests for this recipe so I thought I would share my first ever recipe here on Let’s Talk Babies!

These chicken wings are so, so good. They are a huge hit with my whole family and we eat them frequently. The added bonus is that since they are baked they are much healthier than traditional wings. I usually serve them with carrots and celery sticks, but have also done them as a more traditional meal with rice and steamed veggies.

What You’ll Need:

– 2lbs of chicken wings

– 1-2 T of olive oil

– Salt and Pepper

– Cooking Spray

– 2 cups of flour

– About 1/4 cup of your favorite wing sauce

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

To begin, cut your chicken wings into 3 sections and discard the wing tip.

Once all your wings are cut, place them in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with approximately 2 T of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. If you like your wings hot you could also add a dash of Tabasco at this point too if you wanted. Toss the wings to coat.

In a large tuperware dish or a large ziploc bag place approximately 2 cups of flour. Transfer the wings to the dish or bag and shake to completely coat in flour.

Cover a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray liberally with cooking spray.

Place wings on the baking sheet, being sure to shake off any excess flour first. Once all the wings are on the baking sheet spray each wing liberally with cooking spray.

Place wings in the oven at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes remove from the oven, turn the wings over and place back in the oven for an additional 30 minutes.

Once wings are done place them in a large mixing bowl.  If you are going to be using the same wing sauce for all the wings place them all in the same bowl. Since I have no tolerance for spicy things and my husband loves his wings hot I usually use two different types of wing sauce so I transfer mine to two different bowls.

Add your wing sauce to the bowl, use as much or as little as you would like. I typically use a total of about 1/4 cup of wing sauce, a couple of tablespoons per batch of about 8 wings. Toss the wings so they are evenly coated.

Transfer wings to serving dish and enjoy!

These baked wings turn out crispy on the outside and nice and moist inside every time. They are super delicious. I pretty much always have a pack of wings in the freezer for those days when we are all craving them. Maya loves them! Although, I don’t put wing sauce on hers, she likes them plain.

I hope you enjoy them as much as we do. Let me know what you think.

 

 

The long standing warning from pediatricians and other health care professionals to avoid introducing nuts into your child’s diet until they are 3 years old has recently been changed.  Studies have found that it could be that waiting to introduce nuts into your child’s diet may actually increase their chances of developing a nut allergy.  Only about 1-2 percent of children are predisposed to nut allergies because of a family history.  By introducing nuts earlier children without a predisposition may be much less likely to develop the an allergy.

Recently the AAP (Amercian Academy of Pediatrics) changed it’s long standing policy regarding nuts and is now recommending introducing nuts into a child’s diet as early as 6 months of age if the child has shown no signs of other food allergies and there is no family history of nut allergies.  For many parents, especially those with older children who had to avoid nuts for so long it may be hard to accept the new recommendations.  Nut allergies are scary to many parents and taking that first step and giving your child something that contains nuts for the first time is very nerve-wracking.

When introducing nuts parents should be sure to give their child a very small amount the first time and be careful to watch for signs of an allergic reaction.  Common symptoms of an allergic reaction include: wheezing, stomachache, vomiting, diarrhea, hives and swelling.  If you suspect an allergic reaction contact your child’s doctor and if the symptoms are severe seek medical treatment immediately.

Be sure to talk to your child’s pediatrician about these new recommendations and make sure you have all the facts and information before beginning to introduce nuts into your child’s diet.

Remember it is not safe for children until the age of 5 to have whole nuts.  Any nuts your child consumes before the age of 5 should be in spread form, or ground into other foods.

Having a child with a nut allergy (or any food allergy for that matter) poses particular challenges when they start choosing foods for themselves.   When Maya was diagnosed with a peanut and tree nut allergy last year that was one of the first things I worried about.  I knew that for the time being I would be able to protect her, for the most part, by choosing her foods for her, being diligent about reading labels and directing others about what she could and could not eat.  But, what was I going to do when she started being places on her own, choosing her own foods, being exposed to foods that I didn’t pick out or read the labels of before hand?

For children with life threaten nut allergies the consequences can be devastating if they inadvertently eat something that contains nuts.  My daughter has an epi-pen that we can use if she happens to have an anaphylactic reaction, but still.  The best approach to helping avoid potentially dangerous exposure to nuts is to teach your child from a very young age what to ask and what foods to avoid so they can be their own advocate.

We’ve already started teaching Maya that she can’t eat nuts.  She is still to young to really get it, but slowly I see it sinking in.  Sometimes I say she can’t have something at the store and she’ll respond by saying “ya, nuts, no nuts.”  I guess after hearing it so many times she’s starting to get it.

A few of the things I’ve started doing already to help Maya learn about her nut allergy and what she needs to do are:

  • Telling her whenever I can why she can’t eat something.  If she can’t have a piece of chocolate or a cookie because it may contain nuts I tell her that.
  • Telling her that she can’t eat nuts and why.  I try to explain that nuts are dangerous for her and her body will have a bad reaction if she eats them.
  • Showing her what nuts look like and telling her she can’t eat them so that she will recognize them if someone offers one to her.

A few things we plan on doing as Maya gets a little older to help her learn what to ask and what to avoid:

  • Teach her to ask if something has nuts.
  • Continuing to teach her about the foods she must avoid and those she needs to be careful about.
  • Teach her to use her epi-pen when she is old enough.
  • Teach her to tell people who are offering her food that she is allergic to nuts so hopefully they will help her avoid dangerous foods.

I think that teaching your child to be their own advocate is very important.   You tell those caring for your children about the nut allergy, how to use the epi-pen, etc, but teaching your child about their allergy and making them an advocate for themselves creates another line of defense.

Do you have a child with a food allergy?  What things have you done with your child to help teach them about their food allergies?  Have you found some things work better than others?

I’ve learned that having a child with a nut allergy means you have to read the labels of everything you buy a little more carefully. As you load your grocery cart you are looking for actual nuts in the ingredients list of everything you pick up as well as special label warnings such as “may contain nuts”, “produced on shared equipment with nuts”, or “produced in a facility that also processes nuts”. Since even the smallest amount of nut protein can result in an allergic reaction it is always best to steer clear of any product you either suspect may contain nuts, or you suspect may have come into contact with nuts.

Remember, there is a lot of stuff out there that is perfectly safe for your child to eat and the more you learn about nuts and nut allergies the better you will get at identifying safe and unsafe foods.

There are a few foods that are considered “high risk” for those with nut allergies. They include;

  • Baked goods: Unless you make it yourself or it has a clear label that it is safe it is probably a good idea to avoid it. Cross-contamination is very common with baked goods as there is a lot of sharing of prep surfaces, cooking surfaces and cooking utensils.
  • Candy (especially chocolate): There are a few candy manufacturers that make some of their chocolate and candies in nut free facilities, however, most are prepared on shared surfaces with nut products. Read the labels carefully. If it isn’t labeled as safe, skip it.
  • Ice Cream: Cross-contamination is very common in ice cream parlors. The same scoop is used over and over again. Even soft serve can become cross-contaminated if the same machine dispenses multiple kinds of ice cream. Do your research before allowing your child to eat ice cream while you’re out. The safest thing to do is to buy a carton of ice cream from the store so you know what the ingredients are and you know the product is safe.
  • Ethnic Foods: African and Asian cuisine often contain peanuts and tree nuts. With Mexican and Mediterranean cuisine cross-contamination is possible as some of their dishes may contain nuts. It is best to avoid these foods unless you absolutely know it is safe (ie you made it yourself or have talked to the restaurant owner and chef).
  • Sauces: Many chefs use peanuts, peanut butter, or other nuts to thicken their sauces. Read labels, talk to the restaurant manager, and know it is safe before you allow your child to consume it.

To name a few. It really comes down to doing your homework. Thankfully food labels are a lot easier to read now adays and often contain special warnings that make it so much easier to identify safe and unsafe foods. Nuts can be easy to avoid if you know what to look for.

Here are a few helpful websites:

From the moment my daughter started eating solids at 6 months old she was incredibly picky. She hated all baby cereal, no matter what you mixed in with it. She hated most vegetables, especially green beans (she could smell those things coming a mile away). And, it was pretty hit and miss on the fruit too.  Can you believe she didn’t like applesauce, what baby doesn’t like applesauce? The few things I could consistently get her to eat were prunes, peas and this creamy wheat and peaches breakfast by Beech-Nut.

Things did improve slightly when we were able to introduce finger foods. Fruit was a big hit, peaches and grapes being way up there on the favorite list. She loved apples too (who knew since applesauce was such a bust). Anything from the bread group was a big hit too. Veggies were still a big miss, except those peas. No go on any diary either, the kid hated yogurt, she wouldn’t even open her mouth for yogurt.

When Maya was around a year old I knew things had to change. Meal times were becoming daily battles and I didn’t want to start a war over food, I knew that just couldn’t end well. So, I did a few things to see if I couldn’t transform her eating habits.

I did 5 things that really worked to transform my picky-eater. They may not work for you, but if you have a picky-eater yourself you know they’re worth a shot.

  1. I eliminated a few nursing sessions so that she wasn’t eating close too meal time.  I figured she was more likely to try something if she was hungry.
  2. I let her take control of her eating. Instead of feeding her I let her feed herself. I just put the bowl or plate in front of her and let her have at it.  This worked wonders.
  3. I stopped stressing about how much she was eating. I figured if she was hungry she would eat. This was a lot easier to do since I had given her control of her food.
  4. I made sure that every meal consisted of at least 1-2 things that she really loves. I found she was more likely to try the other things on her plate when they were next to a favorite.
  5. I started introducing new foods slowly and stopped getting upset when she refused to eat them. I just put them in front of her, if she tries them great, if not maybe next time.

Although she doesn’t have a huge repertoire of food she loves, she does pretty well. Her meals are pretty balanced and she will eat from every food group, every day. She still loves her peas but has added carrots, tomatoes and sweet potatoes to the list of favorite veggies. If given the chance she would eat fruit and bread for every meal, except breakfast which is all about Raisin Bran cereal. Yogurt is her new favorite morning snack. Cheese and chicken have become big hits, as well as cheese stuffed pasta and turkey cold cuts.

It felt good to have her go from refusing to open her mouth to most foods to looking like this after a meal!!

The biggest thing I did was take the stress out of meal time. I found that as soon as I stopped worrying so much about it and let her control her eating at mealtimes things became so much easier.