After several months of constant takeout (and a respite from this blog), Travis & I decided it was time to buckle down and start cooking our own food for a change. FreshDirect, a Manhattan/Hamptons/NYC area grocery delivery service, was offering unlimited summer deliveries (minimum $30) for $10 (instead of $6 per delivery), so I decided to sign up in hopes that we'd take advantage and start saving money and spending more time in the kitchen.
While some takeout I clearly am unable to reproduce in my lovely apartment kitchen (sushi) I was hoping most of what we normally order I could make myself.
Enter, wings. Now I love wings as does Travis and we typically order them a couple of times a month, at least. However, adding up the cost of wings (insanely hot for him, medium for me), fries/onion rings, salad and soda, the total each delivery ended up somewhere around $30 - $35. Trying to both stick to my summer cooking resolution AND potentially save a free dollars in the process, I decided to make my own.
Remembering that Ariel & Malia's mom, Ms. Brady, makes her own wings from scratch and how awesome A&M made them sound, I thought, "hey, I may not subscribe to Gourmet magazine, but I can certainly try and make my own!". I also decided to go ahead and make my own blue cheese dressing.
I selected this wings recipe with minor alterations from Gourmet magazine's site, Epicurious, as it was based on Anchor Bar's (the originator of the Buffalo Wing) recipe AND I thought it had a higher chance of being similar to Ms. Brady's recipe.
Yum! The wings were delicious and we both agreed they were a definite new addition to our regular rotation of home cooking. Especially nice was being able to put piping hot sauce over crisp wings instead of them waiting around under a hot lamp or in a delivery bag. The blue cheese dressing was a little too salty and too much Worcestershire, but overall I enjoyed it.
Texture-wise, definitely more of a dressing than a dip, but it could be thickened with more mayo if you desired.
Recipes are as follows:
Buffalo Chicken Wings:
Makes 2 dinner or 4 appetizer servings
3 lbs chicken wings (12 to 14)
6 cups vegetable oil (for frying, or approximately one inch deep)
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup Frank's hot sauce (can use less if desire less heat)
1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
To prep the chicken (can do while oil heats):
Cut off chicken wing tips, reserving for another use, and halve chicken wings at joint
To deep fry:
Pour oil into deep, heavy pot/kettle. Heat until a thermometer reads 375 degrees F. Right before the oil hits 380 degrees F, pat dry 6 or 7 wings. Carefully lower wings into oil and fry, stirring/flipping occasionally until cooked through, golden and crisp, 6 to 8 mins. With a slotted spoon/tongs, transfer wings to paper towels to drain. Return oil to 380 degrees F. Pat dry remaining wings and fry in same manner.
To make the hot sauce:
In a small pot melt butter over moderately low heat and stir in hot suace, vinegar, and salt to taste (if needed). Once combined, remove from heat.
To coat the wings:
Place slightly cooled wings into bowl. Pour warm hot sauce over wings and toss to coat. Serve wings warm or at room temperature. Serve with celery & carrot sticks and blue cheese dressing.
Blue Cheese Dressing (recipe from Joy of Cooking):
Makes 2 cups
1 cup mayo
½ cup sour cream
¼ cup chopped parsley
1 to 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
6 dashes Worcestershire sauce
Salt & pepper to taste
4 oz blue cheese
In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients except cheese and process until smooth. Once smooth, add cheese and process to desired consistency. Taste and adjust if needed, use immediately or cover and refrigerate.