With March Madness over and last weekend’s Elite Eight morphing into next weekend’s Final Four and then National Championship, this little event planner’s mind starts thinking menus. And for sporting events, well… there’s this wing joint up the road…
Now, this place has wings that are the perfect blend of bite and sweet, but due to a little thing called a budget … and the fact that this joint is usually slammed during just such sporting events … we can’t always just hop in the car and go every time we have a hankering for wings. That in mind, I decided to try my hand at some sort of replication of these wings.
After about two years of perfecting this thing, Mr. Old School says I’ve actually exceeded the mark; and every time I serve it to guests, I get asked for my recipe, so I thought I’d share my creation with you.
It’s a really great dish to serve when entertaining because it’s so easy to do and doesn’t take your focus away from your guests while feeding them something super delicious.
It’s even better as leftovers. Trust me.
Now, keep in mind that for me, this recipe is put together by feel and taste. I know that, for some of you, that means you won’t be able to recreate this one for yourselves and for that, I’m really sorry. 😦 Now that I’ve perfected the process and as I get requests, I’ll try to figure out the best exact ratios for you “letter-of-the-law” folks. 🙂
Vegetable Oil — around 1 cup
Honey — around 1 cup
Balsamic Vinegar — around 1/2 cup (not pictured)
Juice of 1 Lemon
Fresh Garlic — 4 cloves, diced
1 Shallot — diced
Fresh Basil — 1 big clump of leaves, sliced
Tabasco — 6-10 dashes (to taste)
Vanilla Extract — around 2 tablespoons
Coarse Kosher Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper (to taste)
It’s important to mix the ingredients in the correct order. You want the vinegar, honey, and oil to totally blend together. Someone said something about “emulsify” one time, but since I’m no chef, I’m not sure I’m using this term properly, so I’ll refrain. This will take a few minutes of whisking. Then add you other ingredients and stir well. It’ll look like the image below.
Next, I set my bowl of sauce in a warm water bath. I have a warming burner on my stovetop. I keep it on high. It keeps the sauce warm, softens the shallot and garlic, and blends all the flavors together really nicely. Generally, I assemble the sauce in the morning so it goes slow and low in the water bath for at least 4 hours.
When it’s time to make dinner, you just fire up your grill, toss your wings in vegetable oil, and grill away! Mr. Old School likes his wings a little crispy, so we heat our grill super hot and cook our wings almost to the point of burnt; definitely to browned and crispy skin.
Once your wings are cooked, toss them in your sauce and serve. Our family loves them with a little salad and corn on the cob … or homemade french fries. MMM-MMM!!!!!
It’s homemade. It’s easy. It’s healthy. And it’ll be everyone’s favorite.
I forgot to mention that you can make this sauce and just keep it on hand and ready to go. It’s great on grilled chicken breast and salmon. Yes. Salmon. I usually pair my chicken/salmon with a green veggie, honey-glazed carrots and some brown rice.