Though chicken wings almost never occur to me when I'm figuring out dinner, there's no good reason they can't do the job: roasted chicken wings offer the pleasure of a roast chicken in a fraction of the time, with the added benefit of a decadent skin-to-meat ratio. In fact, they're mostly foolproof since they have so much interior fat that they tend to baste themselves while cooking. My rule is to roast them at a high temperature until they're golden and crisp, and they always turn out delicious.
Wings call out for a good sauce, naturally, which is what led me to this Tyler Florence recipe from Tyler's Ultimate. It takes the typical Buffalo sauce (a combination of butter and hot sauce) in a new direction. Spicy red Thai curry paste plays the spicy role while lime zest, honey, and soy sauce round out the flavors. It nails the spicy-sweet-salty notes perfectly.
- 4 pounds chicken wings, each cut into two "drumettes"
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
- 1 tablespoon thai red curry paste
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, for garnish
Preheat an oven to 425F. Rinse and thoroughly dry the chicken wings, then toss them in a large bowl with enough olive oil to generously coat, along with plenty of salt and pepper. Spread out on a baking sheet (two baking sheets may be required to ensure the wings have plenty of room to caramelize; if that's the case, switch them halfway through cooking) and roast for 25-30 minutes, until they are golden and the skin is crisp.
In the meantime, whisk together the remaining ingredients to make the sauce. Taste and season to taste with more curry paste, soy sauce, or lime juice (for heat, salt, and acidity respectively).
Remove the wings from the oven and combine them in a large mixing bowl with the sauce. Toss quickly to coat them thoroughly (the butter will begin to melt), then spread out on a platter. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve immediately.