When Jeanne Ambrose first told me about her book, The Heartbreak Recovery Kitchen, I was intrigued and then when she asked me to contribute a short essay for it, i was happy but when I finally got to see the book, my reaction: OMG, I want to cook everything in here!

The book is based on the premise that no matter what happens to you – bad date, bad vacation, bad date on a bad vacation, layoff, heartbreak, hangovers, anything at all that isnt fun – you should still be able to eat well. I agree!

With fun sections like " Pity party," "when life hands you lemons," and "bit boozy" you really can't go wrong.  I love the way the mother-daughter team behind the book write their recipes. Not only do they work well, they are fun to read! 

Jeanne has graciously agreed to give away one autographed copy of her book to one Life of Spice reader. So, to enter, tell me: How do you throw a pity party?", post your comment here and tell your friends to come join in. Winner will be chosen by a random drawing and announced here on November 7th, 5:00 pm

In the meantime, order your books here at – 

In the meantime, come join my PITY PARTY with a recipe from Jeanne's book – Rum and Coke marinated Chicken Wings!

Photos for A Life of Spice by 's Sala Kannan

Rum and Cola Super-Crispy Wings

(From the Heartbreak Recovery Kitchen) 

Makes 8 to 10 appetizer servings.

3 pounds chicken wing drummettes

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon chili-flavored olive oil

1 cup cola

1/4 cup rum

3 to 4 tablespoons hot sauce

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon butter


1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with foil. Add chile oil and chicken . Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Turn chicken in pan to coat with oil. Bake for 45 to 60 minutes or until chicken is deep golden brown and super crispy, carefully pourig off liquid at the halfway point (seems like a long time at a high temp, but that’s what makes them so awesome; just do it).

2. While chicken bakes, in a small saucepan, combine cola, rum, hot sauce, honey, and butter. Bring to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30 minutes or until it reduces to a thickened glaze. 

3. Remove chicken from oven and brush generously with glaze; return to oven about 5 minutes more. Serve with remaining glaze and lots of napkins.



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  1. Buttered popcorn and bourbon on the rocks make a divine combination to take the edge off what ails you. Thinking of indulging while I watch election returns…

  2. I cook… usually something simple but comforting, and usually with a large glass of wine in hand! And usually I eat on the couch watching a total guilty pleasure movie, too.

  3. Those look so good and interesting… almost like chocolate with cayenne pepper interesting… sweet and spicy and booze helps a lot 😉 Will have to try them soon

  4. My pity party is a movie to cry over, with a side of peanut m&m’s and cold milk.

  5. How delicious looking are these!

    It’s a pity I fon’t have any right now….but I WILL!

  6. When I have a pity party I share popcorn with my little dog. She patiently listens to anything I have to say and is always on my side.

  7. When I have a pity party, I order Chinese food and curl up in front of a good TV show. 🙂

  8. It requires a couch, a few tearjerker movies, and Twizzlers.

  9. My friends and I are a bit stereotypical…Thai take out, many variations of chocolate (must be peanut M&Ms and some sort of brownie) rum and wine.

  10. Ice cream sundaes right out of the carton, warm Toll House cookies, buttered popcorn with cayenne pepper or a bottle of wine shared with my best friend.

    I’m trying these wings for dinner tomorrow! They look amazing!

  11. These really sound tasty. You should post them over at

  12. What’s a party without your best friend? My girlfriend loves to watch TV with me and eat peanuts. She likes to share sandwiches or even a whole dinner. Sometimes we share cereal right out of the box. Just being together chases pity away. We can hardly wait to try these wings! Oh, did I tell you my best friend is my dog?

  13. I totally need a pity party recipe 😀 hehe

  14. I can’t wait to try the wings . . . the perfect dish to recover from a busy week, bad day, etc.!

  15. Delicious chicken wings! 🙂

  16. When feeling down, I party it up with something delicious and preferably chocolate-flavored! Creating something in the kitchen usually helps boost my mood! Sounds like an awesome book!

  17. Oh, my pity parties involve a lot of wine and ice cream!

  18. The chicken wings look delicious!

    My pity party? A few strong shots and early to bed. Things always seem better the next morning!

  19. Wine. Wine Wine. (:

  20. Pity, party of one. I hie me down to the coffee shop, the one with the fairtrade beans and artisinal roastings, no inpersonal flourescent lit chain for this party, and order something in a big cup with a fancy name and foam on top.I take e…xtra napkins and sit in the back, in the darkest corner, avoiding all eye contact. I sip. I sniff. I slurp. I wipe the foam off my nose. I wallow in the very pit of despair. My, but this coffee is good. Don’t enjoy! Wallow, wallow – and warm, the coffee is warming. Don’t smile, don’t hold back, let those tears come – too late, mouth corners uplifting. Sip. Slurp. Sniff, where’d the sniff go? Despair drains away with the coffee. Are those 7 layer bars? Maybe a second cup, regular, with a chair by the window.The sun is so nice today, how did I not notice that before? Oh, look who’s here….

  21. Always have wine at pity parties

  22. The winner is JudyB. Please email me your address.

  23. My pity parties are usually a solo affair involving dark chocolate and red wine.

  24. Wow..These were delicious. I wonder if the other recipes in The Heartbreak Recovery Kitchen cookbook are as good. Hope I win a copy!!

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