I’m a freak for hot wings. It’s my favorite thing to have delivered. But, they’re even better if you go to the trouble to make them at home. This recipe has been adapted from several that I tried over the years and there is not a lot of precise instruction. Just go for it!
Wash off, dry and salt the chicken. The salt will draw out a little moisture and a bit of the chill goes away as it sits. I don’t like to fry freezing cold chicken. It drops the temp of the grease too much.
I have a spice mix that I took from a Paul Prudhomme recipe. Here are the ingredients. I usually make four times this much at a time and keep it around in a jar. I think should at least double the recipe if you want to use some in your flour.
2 tablespoons salt
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon white pepper
Shake this mixture to combine in a jar or plastic bag. I put about a cup of flour in a plastic bag and add some of the seasoning. Taste the flour to see if it’s spicy enough for you. Then I shake about 4 chicken wing drummies at a time in the flour. No milk or egg wash. The moisture that is drawn out by the salt will be enough for a light coating of flour to stick. Flour enough for one batch. My skillet holds about 10 pieces.
Heat about 3/4 of an inch of oil in a skillet to about 350 degrees. My thermometer is the type that clips on the side. But, with that little grease in the pan, I just lay it faceside down in the pan. Grease temp will go up and down while you’re cooking. So, just keep on eye on it. Smoking is not what you want. Maybe a little vapor but not burning hot. I have a gas stove and keep the temp set on between 7 and 8 while I’m frying.
Add your floured pieces and cook each side about 5-7 minutes. You want a big old sizzle when you start frying, reducing as the moisture is cooked out of the chicken.
Meanwhile, the sauce. Take about a stick and half of butter, cut it up into tablespoon size pieces. Throw it into a small saucepan. Toss in a couple of tablespoons of the seasoning, maybe three. Add about 1/3 of a bottle of Louisiana hot sauce. Turn on the heat until the butter is just melted, stirring to combine and dissolve the seasonings. Then take it off the heat. As it cools, go by and stir it vigorously now and then. This way you get a sauce that isn’t separated and oily. The sauce is good at room temp when you dunk the chicken. The chicken will be hot enough, the sauce doesn’t have to be.
As you finish batches, stick them in a low oven. The lowest mine will go is 170. So, that’s what they get. I like to set them on a rack over papertowels because I want the chicken to stay crispy and not be sitting in grease.
When you’ve fried all the chicken, take a pair of tongs and dip each piece in the sauce, completely submersing and then shaking off excess. Pile ’em all on a platter and serve with extra sauce and, yes, ranch dressing or blue cheese. Damn good.