Brown Sugar Chipotle Wings

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Adapted from
Meredith Steele
Steele House Kitchen.com
November 20, 2015

For this Super Bowl Party LI (51), I was looking for something that had a taste of something that was sweet, spicy  and smoky with a touch of heat. I found this recipe for these baked Brown Sugar Chipotle Wings made with McIhenny Tabasco®  Chipotle Pepper Sauce. This particular flavor of pepper sauce blends Mexican heritage with the Louisiana traditions of Cajun and Creole cooking. A most divine combination, if I say so myself. Anyways, to make a long story short, these wings came out crispy with the meat practically falling off the bone and were ever so tender. This is just about the most perfect finger food for a party, game day or for any time that you want a quick snack to satisfy the flavor cravings. And the best part about it, you don’t have to fry the wings in a pot of hot oil!

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:
3 – 4 pounds chicken wings, cut into drums and flats, tip discarded
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 Tablespoons melted unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons  light brown sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons  McIhenny Tabasco®  Chipotle Pepper Sauce

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450°F.

Line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil, and set rack inside. Using  paper towels, pat the  chicken wings dry and place on a large rimmed baking sheet, being careful not to overlap.

Place 1/3 of wings in large bowl, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon baking powder and 1 teaspoon salt, and toss until thoroughly and evenly coated. Place on rack, leaving slight space between each wing. Repeat with remaining two batches of wings.

Place the wings in the oven and roast for 35 minutes. Flip wings, and continue to roast for 15 to 25 minutes longer until golden and crisp.

While the wings are roasting, combine hot melted butter, brown sugar, Tabasco® Brand Chipotle Pepper Sauce, and salt in a large bowl that is big enough to hold all the wings. Stir until smooth and sugar has dissolved.

Immediately after the wings come out of the oven, transfer them to the sauce and toss to coat. Plate the wings and serve.

Beer Pairings: wheat beers such as Hefeweizen or even a raspberry Lambic.

Cook’s Notes:
Baking powder, not to be mistaken with baking soda, is a leavening agent usually used in baked goods such as cookies and cakes. It’s a mixture of sodium bicarbonate, cream of tartar and cornstarch. When mixed with salt and coated on chicken the baking powder dries out the skin, leaving it crisp and crunchy. The science behind this cooking technique is that the addition of the baking powder raises the pH level in the chicken, making the wings more alkaline (basic) allowing the peptide bonds of the proteins in the skin to weaken, creating a texture that is less leathery or papery, and more crispy.

DO NOT use baking soda as a substitute for the baking powder. Baking soda will give your wings a  very distinct salty and  metallic bitterness that will not be pleasing to your taste buds.

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Maple Bacon Ice Cream

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I am one of those people who like to combine, savory, sweet, salty smoky flavors all  together in one bite and this recipe does just that.And the best thing about this ice cream is that it does not require a machine,  but will require the use  of your very ordinary, ever day  freezer.

 

Serves 12

Ingredients:
For the  bacon:
5 strips Maple smoked bacon
about 2 teaspoons light brown sugar

For the Ice Cream Custard:
One 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon  salt
2 cups heavy cream

 

Directions:
For the Bacon:
To candy the bacon, preheat the oven to 400°F .

Lay the strips of bacon on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat or aluminum foil, shiny side down.

Sprinkle 1½ to 2 teaspoons of brown sugar evenly over each strip of bacon, depending on length.

Bake for 12 to 16 minutes. Midway during baking, flip the bacon strips over and drag them through the dark, syrupy liquid that’s collected on the baking sheet. Continue to bake until as dark as mahogany. Remove from oven and cool the strips on a wire rack.

Once crisp and cool, chop into little pieces, about the size of grains of rice.

Note: The bacon bits can be stored in an airtight container and chilled for a day or so, or stored in the freezer a few weeks ahead.

For the Custard:
Remove the label from the can of the condensed milk. Place the can in a saucepan and fill with water, completely covering the can. Simmer the condensed milk on medium low for 2 hours. Keep a vigilant eye on the simmer can to make sure it stays under water at all times while simmering. After two hours, remove the can from the saucepan using tongs and allow the can to cool and set aside.

Add  the cooled caramelized milk to a large bowl, then add the salt and stir to combine.

In a separate  large bowl, add the heavy cream and  use an electric mixer on high speed, to  beat the heavy cream,  until thick, stiff peaks form, 3 to 5 minutes.

Add 1/3 of the whipped cream to the caramelized  condensed milk. Gently fold in the cream and combine. Add the remaining whipped cream.

Transfer the mixture to a loaf pan or freezer-safe container, cover  with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, for  at least 6 to 8  hours.

To serve, allow the ice cream to stand at room temperature for a few minutes. Stir in the the bacon bits. Serves scoops of the ice cream in bowls or on cones.

Note: The ice cream can be stored in the freezer for  up to 2 weeks.

 

TODAY.com Parenting Team FC Contributor


Lemon Pepper Shrimp

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This is my version of P.F. Chang’s China Bistro Lemon Pepper Shrimp. Basically, the dish is a   wok-crisped shrimp stir-fried with celery, bean sprouts, scallions and fresh lemon slices in an aromatic black pepper sauce.

Chefs at P. F. Chang’s  cook most dishes in heavy woks over extremely high heat with sparks flying and flames nipping at their noses. The special stove is designed so that the tall fires work at the back end of the wok, away from the chef. The well-ventilated stove is built with a steady stream of running water nearby to thin sauces and rinse the woks after each dish is prepared. Like most home cooks, I don’t have one of those super efficient  professional stoves at home. So the challenge for me was to tweak this recipe for standard kitchen equipment. Using a regular electric range  and  a large cast iron skillet, I was able to recreate  the dish  in my kitchen.

Another thing to consider is that the sauce is key to this  dish.  The kitchen  staff and line  cooks move extremely fast back in those P.F. Chang’s kitchens. The chefs are well-trained, but they eyeball measurements for sauces with a ladle, so each wok-prepared dish is going to come out a little different each and every time it is made.  Just like home cooking, the and measurements at the restaurant aren’t exactly scientific.

With all that being said,the shrimp is lightly breaded in cornsatarch and flash fried in oil. For best results, strain the shrimp out of the oil, add it back to the pan with the sauce, and you’ve got yourself pretty good dish just as  tasty  as the original!

Serves 2

Ingredients:
For the Sauce:
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons chopped garlic
1/2 teaspoon minced ginger
1/3 cup soy sauce
3/4 cup water
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper

For the Shrimp:
1 pound medium raw shrimp (31/40 count), shelled and deveined
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup vegetable oil
4-6 thin lemon slices, each cut into quarters
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 large green onions, sliced  diagonally
2 celery stalks, sliced  diagonally
1 cup bean sprouts

Directions:
Make sauce by heating 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or large saucepan over medium heat. Saute garlic and ginger in the hot oil for about 15 seconds being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the soy sauce, then dissolve cornstarch in the water and add the mixture to the pan. Add brown sugar, lemon juice and black pepper and bring mixture to a boil. Simmer for two minutes then remove it from the heat.

Coat all the shrimp generously with cornstarch. Let the shrimp sit for about five minutes so that the cornstarch will adhere better.

Heat a cup of oil in a wok or large skillet over medium heat. Add the shrimp to the pan and saute for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shrimp starts to turn light brown. Strain the shrimp out of the oil with a slotted spoon or spider and discard the  oil. Replace shrimp back in the wok along with the lemon slices, saute for a minute, then add the sauce to the pan. Toss everything around to coat the shrimp thoroughly. Cook for another minute or so until the sauce thickens on the shrimp.

As the shrimp cooks, heat up 1 teaspoon of oil in a separate medium saucepan. Cut the green part of the scallions into 3-inch lengths. Add the scallions, celery and bean sprouts to hot oil along with a dash of salt and pepper. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes until  the scallions begin to soften.

Remove from the heat and build the dish by adding the stir fried vegetables to a serving plate. Add the shrimp over the vegetables, garnish with scallions and serve.

 

TODAY.com Parenting Team FC Contributor