Author Notes: Every Sunday evening, my S.O. and I have “splurge night”, where we allow ourselves to have something a bit (OK, maybe a lot) more decadent than our usual weekday fare.
So why Sunday, you may ask? Well, we have tried putting splurge night on Friday or Saturday, but that has a tendency to catapult us off-track for the rest of the weekend. So by splurging on Sunday, there’s less damage that can be accomplished before Monday morning, ha!
Anyhoo, my S.O. almost always chooses pizza and I almost always choose wings. Our favorite wing place in town has a huge selection of sauces, including Suicide Sauce. The big incentive in choosing that sauce is that if a person can eat 16 suicide wings, they can get their picture on the Wall of Flame. I have observed that people in the pictures are usually sweating, have big red rings around their mouths, and look generally miserable. Being the huge wimp that I am, I rarely go beyond the medium heat categories. Maybe they should build a Wimps Wall of Shame so that I can get my picture hung as well. In my picture though, I would be fresh as a daisy, smackin’ my lips and looking pretty darned happy .
So back to splurge night. Sometimes, I get really ambitious and make our wings here at home, while coming up with unique sauce flavors of my own. The latest of these inventions is Choco-Chili Chicken Wings–crispy fried wings that have been marinated in fresh citrus and served with a chocolate/chili/orange dipping sauce. We’re talkin’ lip smackin’ good. And perfect for game day, parties and celebrations or your own “splurge night”! - Sherry K-Jazzy Gourmet
- 1 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, divided
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons less sodium soy sauce
- 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
- 3 1/2 pounds chicken wings, separated at joints and wing tips removed
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 can (8-ounces) tomato sauce
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon Ancho chili powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 3/4 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/8 teaspoon teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
- 2 quarts vegetable oil
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- To make the marinade, combine 1 cup orange juice, lime juice, soy sauce and 1 teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Place chicken in a 1-gallon re-sealable plastic food storage bag. Pour marinade over chicken. Seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, turning the bag occasionally to ensure even marinating.
- To make the Choco-Chili sauce, heat olive oil in medium saucepan over medium high heat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in garlic and cook an additional 3-4 minutes, until onion is tender. Add tomato sauce, 1/2 cup orange juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons Ancho chili powder, pumpkin pie spice, cumin, cardamom, cloves, honey, chocolate and orange zest. Combine well. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set aside and cool to room temperature until ready to use.
- Set a large, 6-quart cast iron Dutch oven over medium high heat with 2 quarts of vegetable oil. Heat the oil to 350˚F., using a frying thermometer to gauge the temperature of the oil. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and drain through a colander.
- Mix flour, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon Ancho chili powder in a 1-gallon re-sealable plastic food storage bag. Add the chicken, 8 pieces at a time in the flour mixture and shake to coat. Lay the coated chicken on a wire rack set over a sheet pan to rest for 10 minutes before frying. Continue with the remaining chicken pieces until all of the chicken has been coated. Fry the chicken in batches of 12 pieces. The temperature of the oil should drop to around 300˚F. Fry chicken wings until they are golden brown and begin to float, 8-11 minutes (depending on the size of that flapper!). Place chicken on a sheet pan that is lined with paper towels. Be sure to allow the oil to return to 350˚ F. before adding more chicken to the hot oil. Serve hot with Choco-Chili dipping sauce.