Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It's not the Super Bowl without the wings

So I'm making a batch of buffalo wings for my brother's Super Bowl party on Sunday. My goal is to make half of them with barbecue sauce (Gates, of course), and the other half with a traditional hot wing sauce.

I've tried store-bought wing sauces in the past, and they're all terrible; they don't come anywhere near the taste you get from really good wings at restaurants.

I read somewhere that you can make a pretty good, simple wing sauce by mixing butter and hot sauce. So today I tried that. I pan-fried a few test wings and coated them with my hot sauce-and-butter creation.

I took a bite, and my sinuses instantly cleared. The wings lit me up. Maybe I had the ratios off, but I didn't want them to taste too buttery.

So I did an Internet search and found thousands of sauce recipes. Most of them are complex, some featuring a dozen or more ingredients, some of them ingredients I've never heard of.

But we're talking about BUFFALO WINGS here, for cryin' out loud, not fine French cuisine.

Finally I landed on this recipe, courtesy of

1 1/2 cups hot sauce
half stick of butter
tablespoon of ketchup
1/2 cup of maple syrup

Heat all the ingredients in a pan until they're mixed.

That's it. No Creole seasoning. no white vinegar. No ginger. You get the heat from the hot sauce, the great red color from the ketchup, the sweetness from the syrup and the... butteriness from the butter.

And I have ALL the ingredients in the cupboard already.

I'm gonna give it a try on Sunday.

--Matt Kelsey

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