Festive favourite: sticky chicken wings
The festive season is nearly upon us, but don’t fret, our celebrity chef columnist Gary Rhodes has a quick and easy recipe to save you time this Christmas.
This is a dish that you can serve as a starter or you can use it as a main course with a few added extras – it goes well with anything. Serve it with noodles, vegetables, rice or just a simple salad with onions and peppers. You can keep it in the fridge for a couple of days, as long as you reheat the wings and serve them hot. It’s an excellent dish for a BBQ. Two or three bites and you’re done, so it keeps you coming back for more.
It’s also a relatively inexpensive dish with very basic ingredients. Kids love this dish; it’s the kind of thing you can carry around the room, eat it wherever you want. It’s not something you have to sit down at the table and eat. You can have it while sitting down and watching the TV.
The most important thing is to buy fresh chicken wings – do not pick up any frozen stuff, because the meat will be tough. I buy the corn-fed French chicken, which is prime quality, but people cooking at home can just use the local chicken. If you cook it well, it will be fine. Normally people will deep fry the wings or put them into a pan straight away. I pre-poach them in chicken stock and then colour them in a pan. If you throw them straight in a pan, all the juices will be drained and you will lose all the lovely tenderness. This way it will be moist, and finished off in the pan it will have that delicious stickiness.
STICKY CHICKEN WINGS
One kilo chicken wings. For the syrup: 100ml soy sauce, 200g soft brown sugar, 100ml Thai fish sauce. For chicken stock: one litre water, 200ml soy sauce, 100g palm sugar, one large knob ginger (sliced), three cloves garlic (sliced), four star anise, two sticks cinnamon, three strips orange zest. For lemon yoghurt sauce: one and a half tablespoons crushed garlic, two tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 250g plain yoghurt, four tablespoons lemon juice, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper. For the tamarind relish: 200ml water, 300g palm sugar, 100g tamarind puree, 150m soy sauce, 400m extra virgin olive oil
Place all the ingredients for the stock in a pan, and simmer for 20 minutes. When the stock reaches 85 ̊C, add the chicken wings and poach for 20 to 25 minutes until tender. once cooked, allow the wings to cool in the liquor before removing. simmer soy sauce, soft brown sugar and Thai fish sauce in a pan until the mixture turns to syrup. sauté the wings in a hot pan until a deep caramel colour is achieved. Drain off excess oil, drizzle with the caramel syrup, swirl around the pan until sticky, add lime juice, ensuring the syrup sticks to the wings. For the lemon yoghurt sauce: combine ingredients in a bowl. For tamarind relish: place the water in a saucepan with palm sugar, and cook until caramelised. Add the tamarind and soy, allow to cool, whisk in olive oil, and season.