Thursday, June 30, 2011

Grilled Chicken Wing Challenge


Minty Lime Chicken Wings
Maybe I've been watching too much "Master Chef" on Fox. I keep thinking of dinner by star ingredients followed by the phrase "3-ways".  No matter how self-conscious and inadequate my fellow home-cooks trials on television make me feel, I can't help but get sucked into the competition. I find myself craving challenges in the kitchen - even if they are only me against myself. 

Fourth of July is on my brain, as it seems everyone else's - which makes it difficult to manage a fashion line by day, since everyone seems to be somwhere else in their heads. But at home the ideas are flowing, the inspiration is here. 

Today I'll experiment with grilled chicken wings "3-ways". Hopefully you'll be making larger pieces of chicken, on a real outdoor grill. I happen to be all alone in my apartment, grill pan hot, with a small package of 6 wings. But it's all in the seasoning, however you plan to kick it with your chicken.

I can't go all out on all out on all 3 versions, because yeah, as you can see, I had a hard day at work. There's just not time for 3 crazy inventive ideas. If this was a Master Chef challenge, I would only have 90 minutes anyhow. 
Chicken ready to grill
So I broke my ideas down into easy, intermediate and advanced. Not only does this make it immediately easier for you to choose which to try, but I can get them all done in time for reruns of Modern Family.

Grilled Buffalo Wings


EASY / SPICY:
Hardly any prep work, few ingredients and will appeal to anyone who loves buffalo wings.

Grilled Wings with Buffalo Sauce
Prep time: 5-10 min
Cook time: 30-40 min
Servings: 2-3

2 lb chicken wings
2 T canola oil
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper

2 T butter
½  C Franks Red Hot Cayenne Pepper Sauce

Celery & Blue Cheese Dressing for serving

1. Toss wings with oil and season with salt and pepper.

2. Grill for about 20-30 minutes, until falling apart or temp reaches 170 in the fattest part of the wing.

3. Meanwhile, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add hot sauce and heat through. Set aside.

4. Toss cooked wings in sauce and serve with blue cheese dressing and celery.

*Wings may also be baked for approx. 40 minutes at 425F.

*Or, you may use a grill pan over medium heat and cook wings 7 minutes on each side (covered with tinfoil) to create grill marks. Then, bake for 30 minutes at 425F.

Minty Lime Chicken Wings

INTERMEDIATE SKILL / MILD (NO SPICE) :
Requires fresh mint and juicing limes, but otherwise pretty easy. Marinated wings cook up juicy, and the hint of honey and dijon give them a tangy sweetness.

Minty Lime Chicken Wings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30-40 min
Servings 2 - 3

2 lbs whole chicken wings

1/2 C lime juice
¼ C canola oil
1/2 C chopped fresh spearmint leaves
1/4 tsp kosher salt
8 grinds pepper

4 tsp honey
1 tsp Dijon mustard

1. In a chopper, food processor, or blender, place lime juice, oil, mint, salt and pepper.  Pulse until blended.

2. Rinse and pat dry wings. Place in a plastic bag and add ½ C of the juice mixture. Marinate for 30 minutes or more (up to overnight).

3. For the remaining ¾ C juice mixture in the processor, add honey and mustard and pulse until blended. Set aside.

4. Grill for about 20-30 minutes, until falling apart or temp reaches 170 in the fattest part of the wing.

5. Toss cooked wings with honey-mustard juice mixture to serve. Pour some of the mixture over the top of the wings on a platter and garnish with fresh mint.

*Wings may also be baked for approx. 40 minutes at 425F.

*Or, you may use a grill pan over medium heat and cook wings 7 minutes on each side (covered with tinfoil) to create grill marks. Then, bake for 30 minutes at 425F.

Chicken Wings Makhani


ADVANCED / MEDIUM SPICY :
I love the Indian dish Paneer (or Chicken) Makhani. It's a sweet and mildly spicy curry in a creamy tomato sauce. Use the spices as a rub or marinade for the chicken before grilling, and use the balance in the curry sauce. Sour cream works well here instead of milk to keep the sauce thick enough to stick to the chicken. You'll want to lick your plate, it's so delicious!

Chicken Wings Makhani
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30-40 min
Servings: 2-3

2 lbs whole chicken wings
1 T spice mix
2 T canola oil

Spice Mix:
3/4 tsp each:
ground ginger
garlic powder
turmeric powder
cayenne or Indian chili powder
ground cumin
cround coriander
kosher salt

2 T unsalted butter
Remaining spice mix
3 C chopped fresh tomatoes
4 T lemon juice
2 T sour cream
2 T chopped fresh cilantro

1. Mix spices in a bowl. Set aside.

2. Rinse and pat dry wings. Place in a plastic bag with oil and 1 T spice mix. Shake to coat. Marinate 30 minutes – 1 hour.

3. Grill wings for about 20-30 minutes, until falling apart or temp reaches 170 in the fattest part of the wing.

4. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Add spices and stir to dissolve.

5. Add tomatoes, stir, cover and simmer until they break down – about 10 minutes.

6. Add lemon juice, sour cream and cilantro. Simmer loosely covered 20 minutes to thicken the sauce.

7. Serve on a platter topped with sauce, fresh chopped cilantro and a dollop of sour cream.


*Wings may also be baked for approx. 40 minutes at 425F.

*Or, you may use a grill pan over medium heat and cook wings 7 minutes on each side (covered with tinfoil) to create grill marks. Then, bake for 30 minutes at 425F.

 


 

 

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