We are still trying to perfect the ultimate wings, which would be ideally sweet, spicy, sticky, and full of flavors, but always end up a little short in one of the four areas. So instead of trying to hit a homerun, we just went all out and focused on one criteria–the spicy part. In order to do that, we decided to work with habaneros for the first time. These guys are pretty cute and innocent looking on the outside (pics to prove) but when you’re actually dealing with them (gloves recommended) you really are dealing with semi-hazardous ingredients. Some of the ones we got didn’t meet our expectations, while others were scorching hot when tasting a tiny sample. Anyways, the marinade was fairly straightforward (pics provided below) and the final result being a good 4 stars out of 5. The baked wings packed the spicy punch we were looking for with some tangy sweetness as well, but we were looking for a more crunchy and crispy outside (a la fried chicken) but to no avail. I guess that means we’ll have to work on perfecting the crispy aspect of our ultimate wings.
We like to do a little rub down with salt and pepper but you’re welcome to use other seasonings or spices.
After food processing the ingredients, boil in a saucepan with some honey until thickened for the glaze.
Servings: 4 people
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45~60 minutes
14~16 chicken wings
2 habaneros, deseeded (alter for spiciness)
1 cup soy sauce
3 garlic cloves
1 small piece (or 1 tsp) ginger
1/2 pear or apple (or 2 tbsp brown sugar)
1/2 small onion
2 tbsp honey
salt & pepper (pre-rub)
scallions slices (garnish)
sesame seeds (garnish)
1. Apply the salt and pepper on the chicken wings for the pre-rub. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes and preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Meanwhile, prepare the marinade/glaze by adding all ingredients (minus the honey) to a food processor. Pulse until smooth and completely mixed through. Transfer to a saucepan and add the 2 tbsp honey. Bring to a boil until thickened, 5 minutes. Keep ready until basting.
3. Bake the wings for about 30 minutes while basting them frequently every 10 minutes or so.
4. After 30 minutes, set to broil and let cook for another 15~20 minutes while basting with remaining glaze. Broiling near the end creates crispier and crunchier wings that we personally enjoy.
5. When wings are charred and slightly burned, transfer to a serving plate. Let cool for several minutes and garnish with thinly sliced scallion and/or toasted sesame seeds. Enjoy!!