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I love Buffalo Wings as much as the next guy, but as far as hot wings go, sometimes I like a little bit of sweetness to go with the spice. To that end, I found that a bottle of ginger beer goes a long way in adding the sweetness I was looking for, as well as some gingery zip.
To start, I marinated some chicken wings in a mix of ginger beer, soy sauce, and red pepper flakes. The marinade not only helps to add some additional flavor to the chicken, but it also helps the wings to brown when cooking. After soaking about an hour, the wings are drained from their marinade and then baked in a hot oven. While the wings were baking, I set my sights on making a sticky-sweet glaze made from more ginger beer, fresh ginger, soy sauce, honey, and a habanero chili pepper.
Along with fresh minced ginger, the ginger beer in the glaze adds a nice ginger spice to the sauce, as well as sweetness to help round out the heat from a single habanero chili pepper. The addition of honey not only created another layer of sweetness, but it also helped to thicken the sauce so that it could cling to the chicken wings. The resultant dish is a great balance of sweet and spicy that provides a nice change of pace from standard Buffalo wings.
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