Sunday, January 23, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese Dressing

Ever wonder why they call these hot wings Buffalo wings?...well, it sure doesn't have anything to do with buffalo meat!...oh, yuck...even the thought of it! I'm going to enlighten you with a little history of these wonderful messy, but so tasty, juicy, and tender wings oozing in a special hot sauce that you make your very own, and have it medium, or extra hot.

It has been repeated so often that these wings were invented at the Anchor Bar on Main Street in Buffalo, that pretty much everyone accepted it as the truth. There has been less consensus, however, about whether the wings were created when a mistaken delivery of wings arrived at the bar and Frank Bellisimo asked his wife, Teressa, to do something with them...or, when Dom, their son, asked his mother to concoct a late-night snack for regulars at the bar. Either way, it was Teressa, who in 1964 came up with the idea of combining spicy wings with crisp celery, and blue cheese dressing.

Buffalo wings did not become famous until 1980, and the city declared July 29..."Chicken Wings Day"...and simply left it at that!
Buffalo Chicken Wings
adapted from, The Essential New York Times Cook Book

12, or 24 chicken wings (about 2 to 4 lbs)
Salt, and freshly ground pepper, and a dash of garlic powder
2 to 4 Tbsp. vegetable, or canola oil

For the Hot Sauce
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 - 5 Tbsp. Louisiana Red Hot Sauce
1 Tbsp. white vinegar

Set the chicken wings out on the counter, 30 minutes before cooking. Cut off and discard small tip of each wing. Cut the wing bone apart, at the joint. Sprinkle the wings with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Heat a large cast iron, or heavy duty skillet with the oil, until it gets quite hot. Add the wings, and cover with a lid, until it stop splattering, and starts to get golden. Do not turn too many times. Turn over and cook until it gets nice and golden. It takes about 15-20 minutes to cook through. Remove from skillet, and lay them on double paper towels.
Now, in a medium saucepan, melt the butter and hot sauce and add the vinegar. Set aside a small portion of the sauce in a small serving dish, for dipping. Add the chicken wings into the sauce pan, to coat nice and evenly. Serve it on a platter with celery sticks, home made blue cheese, (or store bought) dressing, and extra hot sauce, on the side. 12 wings serves 2, and 24 wings serves 4-6. Either way, make the same amount of sauce for the smaller, or larger portion.

Blue cheese dressing

1 cup good quality ( not low fat, or fat free) mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
juice from half a lemon
1 Tbsp. white vinegar
1/4 crumbled blue cheese
Salt, and pepper, to taste
garlic powder, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste
small portion of chopped fresh parsley

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl. Add more blue cheese, if desired, and serve in a small bowl to accompany the chicken wings. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley, and drizzle some of the hot sauce on top (optional)
Who says: "You can't fry?"...and why not?...The original recipe for frying the wings, calls for deep frying, in 4 cups of oil, but my adaptation calls for 2-4 tablespoons of oil, and you get the same results. You can also bake the chicken wings, or broil them...I tried every method, and came to a conclusion that this is the best method. Baking, and broiling tends to shrink the chicken wings, deep frying has more fat, and cholesterol, but frying them in as little oil as possible, gives a tasty, crunchy, and tender result, which is what you are striving to do! don't be afraid, just make it the way you desire, and ENJOY!

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