Buffalo Wings

Wings with blue cheese is one of those dishes that I hardly every eat when I go out – I make them at home exactly how I like them, and when I have them out at a restaurant or bar I usually end up disappointed. When I do them at home, I like to add a good amount of duck fat to the oil to add some flavor when I fry them, and I also make a ton of thick blue cheese dip, which I spread on far more liberally than I would feel comfortable doing in a public setting. I have been craving wings since the first week of NFL preseason games, so I made them for dinner tonight.

To make the wings, I used:

  • 2 duck legs
  • One package of chicken with about eight wings
  • Lots of corn oil
  • About a cup of flour
  • A tablespoon or two of garlic powder
  • A teaspoon or two of Lawry’s seasoned salt
  • A pinch of kosher salt
  • A sprinkle of white pepper

This made enough wings for James and I to pig out to the point of feeling sick, plus duck meat for my lunch salads this week. I started by trimming the excess skin and fat from the duck legs, and putting that, plus the duck (skin side down) in a cold pan, then letting it slowly come up to medium heat to render the fat. I cooked the duck on the other side for a minute or two, just to get some color on it, then baked it in the oven until it was over 165F degrees. I saved the meat for my lunches this week, and just kept the pan full of fat for this recipe. Once the skin had shrunk down to just a few hard, crispy bits, I pulled them out and was left with a good amount of fat.

 

To prep the wings, James broke down the chicken, separating the wings and drumettes, and taking off the tips, which I discarded. I mixed the flour and all the seasonings together, and dredged the chicken in the mix.

 

I added enough corn oil to the duck fat to give the wings room to cook, then brought it all up to 300F degrees (you can go hotter than this, but I find that as long as you don’t overcrowd the pan the temp creeps up a bit as they are cooking, and also gets hotter for the second batch, so I like to start on the low side) before dropping the chicken. I fried the wings in two batches until golden brown and crispy, and finished in the oven at 300F degrees for a few minutes to make sure they were cooked all the way through. To make a classic Buffalo sauce, I melted about a stick of butter and added an equal amount of hot sauce, using a mix of the classic Frank’s RedHot and some Camouflage Hank Sauce, which I love and have been using a lot lately. I tossed the finished wings in the sauce and they were ready to go.

 

For the blue cheese dip, I used:

  • About equal parts sour cream, mayo, and crumbled blue cheese
  • A sprinkle of onion powder
  • A splash of Worcestershire sauce
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • A small splash of lemon white balsamic vinegar
  • A sprinkle of kosher salt
  • A few chives, minced

 

This made a big bowl, which was more than enough to slather every wing in, plus leftovers that I will think out with some milk to make salad dressing. I just mixed everything together and let it sit in the fridge for a bit to set up before serving it with the wings.

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