Friday, September 21, 2012

Wing (End)Zone

Wing (End)Zone |

This is our precious goddaughter, Avery. And she is ready for some football! Much like many of our other friends that came over the other weekend for opening football weekend!! Ryan and I figured we would go all out and make wings. We decided on three different kinds and put out the usual carrot and celery with ranch dip. All of our guests contributed to the food supply as well.

Normally I don't recommend trying a new recipe for a party, but wings sounded so delicious and with Ryan's grilling skills, I knew we would pull through! We not only tried a new recipe for our shin-dig, we tried grilling wings for the first time. Let's just say, touchdown!!

Wing (End)Zone |

Wings are one of those dishes that we previously would have only ordered in a restaurant because they are more hassle than delicious. I am not a frequent wing-eater either, mostly because they are deep fried and don't agree with my stomach. However, my husband LOVES wings, possibly one of his favorite foods (along with Ranch dressing and Bojangles). He always seems to find an excuse to go out for Wing Night with the boys. 

He prefers the buffalo sauce, which is my least favorite! Here we are again folks, at the culinary crossroads to find something we agree on...not only on the "sauce," but the method of cooking. 

Frying was definitely not going to happen. From the day we said "I Do," it was clear that nothing would be fried in my kitchen! So I gave him the buffalo sauce in exchange for not frying. We then agreed on two other flavors - Sweet and Spicy and Stout Jerk. We looked for recipes that called for grilled wings, which was hard to find! Most recipes call for baking or frying the wings.

Wing (End)Zone |

We followed the Sweet and Spicy recipe from Serious Eats exactly but altered the Stout Jerk one from The Beeroness slightly. And, just for my beloved, we grilled plain wings to cover in buffalo sauce :)

For the Sweet and Spicy wings, hop over to Serious Eats and try out this recipe (my personal fav of the day). 

For the Buffalo wings, we simply marinaded chicken wings (and drumsticks) in pepper, salt and olive oil for a few hours, grilled them and then poured our favorite wing sauce on top.

Wing (End)Zone |

And finally, the Stout Jerk Chicken wings recipe which we got from The Beeroness. We decided to grill them instead of baking and they turned out fantastic! Side note about The Beeroness blog, it is awesome! She uses craft beers in all of her recipes. The girl really knows how to cook! I will definitely share more of her recipes in the future since my husband keeps begging me to make them. You might recall his love of craft beers from this post.

Stout Jerk Chicken Wings

Adapted from The Beeroness, Inspired from Blood, Bones & Butter
Yields: 6-8 servings (appetizer portion)
Prep Time: 2-24 hours (depending on marinade time)
Cook Time: 15-25 minutes

1/2 cup stout beer (we used Stone Imperial Stout)
4 small Habanero peppers, seeded and roughly chopped
6 cloves of garlic, peeled
3 tablespoons ponzu sauce (Asian citrus sauce)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
2 teaspoons Chinese 5 spice powder
1 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons shallots, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 pounds chicken wings and thighs

Add all of the ingredients except the chicken into a food processor and mix until smooth.

Rinse the chicken in water and pat dry. Place into a large heavy duty Ziploc bag. Pour the marinade over the chicken and seal the bag tightly. Gently move the chicken around in the marinade to evenly distribute. Place the bag into a large baking dish and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. Move the marinade around and flip the chicken every 2 or 3 hours to redistribute the sauce.

Once ready to cook, remove the bag from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to grilling. Heat a charcoal grill to medium-high heat, creating a direct heat side and an indirect heat side (by placing coals on one side of the grill).  Grease the grill grates (can use the half onion dipped in olive oil method that Ryan uses).

Wing (End)Zone |

Place the chicken wings and thighs on the indirect side, cover and cook until the skin starts to brown, anywhere between 7-15 minutes (depending on the size of the wings). Move the wings to the direct heat side of the grill and continue to cook until the skins have crisped, another 2-3 minutes. Depending on the size of the wings, you might want to remove one wing and test to make sure the chicken is cooked through before removing all. Once the chicken is cooked through, remove the wings from the grill and place on a large serving dish with plenty of wet naps on the side! Delicious!

Wing (End)Zone |

*Tip from the Grill Master

After reading this post, I received a lovely email from our close friends, the London's. You might remember them from this post. Anyways, Hal is by far one of the best Griller's I know of and he adds a few steps when grilling chicken wings:
When you remove the wings from the grill, toss them in a large mixing bowl with your favorite BBQ or wing sauce and then put them back on the grill to "set" the sauce. This creates a few crispies on the skin according to Hal. Another plus, is it helps keep the wings a little less messy. 

We are certainly going to try this next time we grill wings Hal and Sandy. Thanks for the feedback and for following the blog :)

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