When I get cravings it’s usually for something salty, savory, and spicy. I’ve never been much of a sweets person. I suppose that’s why this website isn’t “I Love Sweets.” I’ll leave those to my wife. She’s the confectionary queen around our house. No, I want some meat, preferably something with a bone. A bone adds flavor and doubles as a built in handle. What’s the perfect snack or appetizer that “meats” all of those criteria? Buffalo wings of course. I’m already a sucker for fried chicken. Dunk it in a spicy, buttery, vinegary sauce and it’s a near religious experience.
I consider myself somewhat of a wing connoisseur and my tastes run the gamut from super sweet to crazy hot and everything in between. That being said, if forced at gunpoint to divulge a favorite I would have to say the classic buffalo wing would come out the winner. The best thing about a classic buffalo wings, aside from being insanely delicious, is they are simple to make. If you don’t count the oil you fry them in, it’s only three ingredients: chicken wings, butter, and hot sauce. That’s it.
Now I don’t want to get into a long drawn out debate about the exact origins of the buffalo wing and what the secret recipe of Anchor Bar’s wings may contain. The fact of the matter is the sauce is butter and a hot pepper sauce. The ingredients of the hot pepper sauce vary from story to story. I’m simply going to use one of the most popular and widely known, Frank’s Hot Sauce.
Start by heating up your oil. Yes, I said oil. I know some people like to bake their wings but we are making classic Buffalo wings and those are deep-fried. If you are worried about counting calories, chicken wings dunked in butter probably aren’t going to be a smart choice no matter how you cook them.
You will want to use oil with a high smoke point. This is basically the temperature you can fry at until the oil starts to break down and burn. I usually like to use common soy based vegetable, canola, or peanut oil. All three will have a smoke point higher than the 400 degrees we will be cooking at. If you have an electric deep fryer by all means use it. The problem you may run into is many will not heat the oil to 400 degrees. I find that a large cast iron skillet or Dutch oven with a long stem thermometer work just as well and I actually find clean up much easier.
While the oil is heating up make sure your wing sections are separated and the wing tips removed. Kitchen shears make quick work of this if your wings aren’t already cut into drumettes and wingettes.
In a small saucepan melt one stick of butter and stir in one 5 oz. bottle of Frank’s hot sauce. Make sure they are mixed thoroughly; turn the heat down on low so the sauce won’t congeal while you are frying wings. I would consider this to be a “medium” on the spicy scale. I don’t run around popping ghost peppers in my mouth for fun but I do like things with some heat so take that for what it’s worth. If it’s not hot enough for you kick it up with some added cayenne or if it’s too hot cool it down with a bit more butter and a dash of white vinegar.
After the oil is up to 400 and your sauce is ready, it’s time to channel our inner Ms. Peachez and “Fry that Chicken.” Slowly lower the wings into the oil being careful not to drop the chicken and splatter hot oil everywhere. Depending on the size of your fryer you may need to fry in several batches. Don’t over crowd the oil with cold wings. This will cause the oil temperature to rapidly drop. The key to super crispy chicken skin is the high heat we are cooking at. Fry the wings for 6-8 minutes. They should be floating at the top waiting to be scooped up and placed in a large bowl. Check a few wings with a thermometer to make sure they are at least 165 degrees internal temp. After you’ve got all your wings fried to perfection it’s time to pour in your sauce and toss the wings making sure to coat them evenly. Serve immediately with a side of ranch or blue cheese dressing.
- 3lbs. Chicken wings with the tips removed
- 1 stick of butter
- 1 5oz. bottle of Frank's hot sauce
- 1 Qt. of Vegetable, Canola, or Peanut oil (You may not need as much in a small skillet)
- Heat oil to 400 degrees.
- In a small sauce pan melt butter and combine with bottle of Frank's hot sauce.
- Once melted turn heat down to low.
- Fry chicken 6-8 minutes or until internal temp reached 165 degrees.
- Place chicken in a large mixing bowl and toss in Buffalo sauce until evenly coated.
- Serve immediately with a side of celery, ranch or blue cheese dressing.