Rum and Coke Chicken Wings

Photos for A Life of Spice by’s Sala Kannan

I have to admit this is the only good color photo we have of a recipe from our cookbook. Yup. The only photo. Don’t you hate being on a budget?

Anyway, the wings photo was posted on food writer Monica Bhide’s blog, A Life of Spice. She ever-so-kindly plugged Heartbreak Recovery Kitchen and mentioned the Rum and Cola wings after checking them out for herself. Wanna see what Monica wrote? Click here.

When Monica and I originally connected, it was over food, but not literally. She pitched a food story or two to me when I was a full-time editor. Then, when I was laid off, Monica shared tips to ease me into the freelance world. In hindsight, it’s kind of funny. I’ve been a magazine editor/writer for years. I hired freelancers regularly. I knew the drill, yet all of a sudden I was floundering because I WAS LAID OFF. I felt worthless. My career? Gone  in one swell foop. I was devastated.

But Monica, a writer I had never met in person, reached out to help, making suggestions and offering support when I was down and almost out. (She has the most mellifluous voice. Just talking to her on the phone is a soothing experience.) She helped me realize that I was still the editor and writer I always had been. Maybe even better, now that I was free of the corporate shackles.

Yup, to quote a cliche: “When one door closes, another opens.” Because I was downsized, our cookbook was born.

And I wanted to include essays of others who had bounced back from heartbreak. So when I heard how Monica Bhide met her husband, I had to include her story in Heartbreak Recovery Kitchen. “Love in the Time of Cardamom” begins: “I was a lonely graduate student in an unfamiliar land.”

In an effort to ease her homesickness, Monica decided to make her mother’s rice pudding. The comfort food spread an enticing aroma that went beyond her apartment and caught the attention of a young graduate student. Monica’s tale  tweaks at the heartstrings. Want to read the whole story? Let me know and I just might post it here. Or you can read it in the book.

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