I have a soft spot for chicken wings; Ferran Adrià apparently does too. The universally acclaimed Spanish chef is known for his forward thinking cuisine, but his latest cookbook, The Family Meal, which we recently featured in our Cook the Book series, is filled exclusively with the simple staff meals that were served at his restaurant, El Bulli, before it closed this year.
If you're looking for the some mind-bending and ridiculously complex approach to the humble chicken wing, move along. But if you're looking for a straightforward, comforting meal absolutely loaded with garlic then you're in luck.
Instead of being fried, these chicken wings are sautéed over moderate heat for 30 minutes, which turns them crackly and golden brown. Then it's all about adding flavor. Ten garlic cloves are tossed in, along with a bay leaf and sprig of thyme. Mushrooms add a bit of depth, while the wine helps cut through the fat. Roasted potatoes would be the perfect side for this dish.
- 6 chicken wings, tips discarded, cut into drumettes and flats (12 pieces total)
- salt and black pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 4 ounces mushrooms (cremeini, white button, or shimeji work) stems removed, caps cut into thick slices
- 10 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 3 1/2 tablespoons water
Season the chicken wings with salt and black pepper. Pour the oil into a large cast-iron skillet set over medium heat. When oil starts to shimmer, add the chicken wings. Cook, flipping occasionally, until the wings are well browned, about 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low if the wings brown too quickly.
If you haven't already reduced the heat to medium-low, do so now, and add the chopped garlic. Cook until golden brown, stirring occasionally, about five minutes.
Add the bay leaf and sprig of thyme. Stir well, and let cook for a few seconds. Then pour in the white wine. Turn the heat up to medium-high and let the liquid reduce for a minute or so.
Toss in the mushrooms. Stir well and let cook for two minutes. Then pour in the water, and cook until the liquid has reduced and the mushrooms are tender, about five minutes. Serve immediately.