Saturday, January 3, 2009

Buffalo Chicken Wings

I love bar food as much as the next person but buffalo chicken wings are my absolute favorite. I am fairly picky about my wings, however, and often find fault with the wings I find at most sports bars -- too mushy, too small, not spicy enough, too fratty, etc. I didn't dare make them at home due to my fear of deep frying until I found this recipe on the wonderful food blog, Simply Recipes. Elise's recipe is ingenious as it calls for broiling rather than deep frying the wings. The broiling method gives the wings a wonderful char that you can usually only get from grilling. The marinade is given some depth by adding several different types of heat to the usual hot sauce and butter -- paprika, cayenne, and black pepper -- each of which hits you in a different part of your tongue. I have reproduced Elise's recipe below with some slight modifications. Elise also has a recipe for blue cheese dip that I have yet to try. I just stick to bottled low fat blue cheese salad dressing for these wings -- yes, Kraft works just fine for bar food.

We had these wings with Artichoke Basille's Pizza, which deserves its own post. However, after standing in the cold for 20 minutes, the ornery guy behind the counter threw our three slices (2 margarita and one artichoke basil) into a small box that threatened to fall apart the whole way home. By the time we got home (and we made quite the trek for this pizza), the slices had melded into one, which was less than ideal for photography. Our love of the pizza is such, though, that we will be going back.

Buffalo Chicken Wings


2 lbs chicken wings (about 12 wings)
3 Tbsp butter, melted (I have used less than called for with good results)
4 Tbsp bottled hot pepper sauce (I prefer Frank's Original)
1 Tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper


1. Cut off wing tips (discard or reserve for other use such as making stock). Cut wings at the joint. I always look for wings that are already cut up as I HATE this step.

2. Create a marinade by stirring together the melted butter, hot pepper sauce, paprika, salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper. Pour all but 2 tablespoons of the marinade over the chicken pieces. Allow chicken to marinate at room temperature for about half an hour in baking pan you will use for broiling (I have skipped the marinating step without too much of a decline in the flavor). Reserve the 2 tablespoons of marinade for coating after the pieces come out of the oven.

3. Broil chicken wings 4 to 5 inches from the heat for about 10 minutes on each side, until chicken is tender and no longer pink. Remove from oven and baste with reserved marinade.

Makes about 24 wings.

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