Party Wings with Cholula Butter
I wasn’t a wing enthusiast until I cooked them on the grill—then I was hooked. The high heat renders the fat, crisping the skin and making them taste both rich and improbably light (unlike the gut-bomb sports bar variety). Of course, wings are the quintessential party snack, something spicy and messy to entertain you while you’re sipping cocktails and swapping one-liners. They can also be the attraction, join other small plates, or provide a hearty snack for friends waiting on something with a longer cooking time, like a smoked whole turkey or brisket. A two-zone fire is essential here because it provides nice heat for an initial char, as well as a moderate zone to cook the meat through without scorching the skin. I use drumettes because they’re meaty and easier to eat, and Cholula for the hot sauce. It’s a smoky Mexican hot sauce that’s delicious on eggs, tacos, and just about everything.
3 pounds (1.4kg) chicken wing drumettes
Olive oil, for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1⁄4 cup (60ml) Cholula hot sauce
3 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1. Place the drumettes in a large bowl, drizzle with enough olive oil to lightly coat, generously season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.
2. Prepare a charcoal grill for two-zone cooking and build a medium-high fire, or heat a gas grill to high. Carefully wipe the preheated grill grates with a lightly oiled paper towel. Using a grill brush, scrape the grill grates clean, then carefully wipe with a lightly oiled towel again.
3. While the grill heats, in a separate bowl, stir together the Cholula, parsley, butter, lemon juice, and garlic.
4. Grill the drumettes over direct heat, flipping and rotating as needed for even cooking, until nicely charred on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Move the drumettes to indirect heat, close the grill, and continue to cook, turning the drumettes often (and closing the grill lid in between), until cooked through and the juices run clear (if you’re uncertain, cut into one to check), 20 to 25 minutes.
5. Place the hot drumettes in the bowl with the Cholula butter, toss vigorously until well coated, and serve immediately.
Copyright © 2018 by Paula Disbrowe, foreword by Amanda Hesser. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.