Chicken wings are a blank canvas, ready to be painted with flavor by the artist cooking them in the kitchen. There’s nothing much that’s fancy about a chicken wing, but when it’s seasoned, dipped and marinated with a little care, it can be transformed into a glistening, juicy gem of a protein.
I get really excited by crispy chicken skin and the way it pairs with the meat underneath. I love the two contrasting textures, the fatty, buttery layer of crispy skin that envelopes the smooth, tender layer of chicken meat. Done right, chicken wings can have as much decadent indulgence as a beautifully marbled ribeye steak.
I also love the challenge that comes with eating a chicken wing. Wings are like the lobsters of poultry – just as sucking on lobster legs rewards those who persevere, wings reward those who nibble on their nooks and crannies.
I’ve cooked my fair share of wings, and my secret for the juiciest, most flavorful ones? Beautiful chicken wings don’t have a “set-it-and-forget-it” recipe. However, you MUST brush your wings with marinade every 10 to 15 minutes while cooking! Periodic glazing ensures that you’re continually hydrating the skin and helping the flavor seep into the meat. Don’t worry if it seems like nothing is happening after the first few brushes of marinade. The sugar from the marinade will start to thicken and caramelize, just how your taste buds like it.
This is one of my favorite chicken wing recipes. I love One Culture Foods’ sauces, especially their Fermented Black Bean Sauce. It reminds me of the flavors I experienced at my grandparents’ house growing up. It tastes like home. The savory, spicy sauce has a well-rounded, distinct sweetness followed by a delicious depth of flavor and subtle heat, which makes it good on literally everything. Especially chicken wings.
Jenny’s Sweet N’ Asian Chicken Wings
2 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
½ cup One Culture Foods’ Fermented Black Bean Sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 teaspoons mirin
4 tablespoons Mike’s Hot Honey
½ teaspoon minced fresh ginger
8-10 chicken wings
- Preheat oven to 425°.
- Toast sesame seeds in a pan with no oil on medium heat, until they turn golden brown. Once toasted, lightly grind the seeds with a mortar and pestle to release their natural aroma and oil.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the seeds, sauce, soy sauce, lemon juice, mirin, honey and ginger. Mix until well combined, then set aside half the marinade.
- Toss chicken wings in half the marinade until they are well coated. (You can cook them right away, or marinate overnight.)
- Lay wings on a foil-lined sheet pan. Cook 35 minutes, using reserved marinade to reglaze the wings every 10 minutes. Be sure to cook at least 5 minutes after the last flip!
- You can garnish the wings with a sprinkle of finely chopped scallions, Japanese furikake seasoning (a mix of dried and ground fish, sesame, seaweed, sugar and salt that you can find in your local Asian grocery), or more sesame seeds.
Finger lickin’ good!