Baked Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese

Just in time for the Superbowl, here’s a chicken wing recipe that I have been making forever, which, given how recently I started cooking, means I’ve been making it since 2010. That’s when Food & Wine buried what-in my opinion-should have been a marquis recipe–in the test kitchen section of its February issue.  When I served it to the family over Thanksgiving, I mentioned that I had made the wings that evening. My mother-in-law said, “You mean you bought them at Safeway and warmed them up?” I basked in the glow for a moment before I confessed that,  no, I actually made them. Then, I confessed that I had baked them, which of course automatically cancelled out my flaming- hot -oil-standing- over- a- hot- stove- kitchen- cred. If you use a Silpat, your cleanup will be as easy as your cooking. Serve them with this blue cheese dipping sauce, which is straight out of Cook’s Illustrated’s “The Best Light Recipes.” I’ve been told this is the best blue cheese dressing ever but I think that’s because most of use bottled dressings and home-made just tastes better.

Baked Chicken Wings (Adapted almost not-at-all from Food & Wine Magazine, Feb. 2010)

2 table spoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

2 pounds chicken wingettes and drumettes

2 and 1/2 tablespoons Frank’s hot sauce

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Line a roasting pan with a Silpat (for super easy cleanup) or with foil sprayed heavily with vegetable oil. (The original recipe calls for a baking sheet but I found that the oil spilled all over the oven unless I used a pan.) While the oven preheats, mix the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Put the chicken in the bowl and toss. Transfer chicken to the prepared roasting pan and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and flip over each wingette and drumette. Return the pan to the oven and cook for 10 to 20 more minutes, depending on your oven.

Remove chicken from the oven and put it in a dish. Microwave the butter until it melts. Toss the butter with the Frank’s hot sauce. Pour the butter and hot sauce mixture over the chicken and toss.

Lighter Blue Cheese Dipping Sauce (Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated “The Best Light Recipe”)

1 ounce strongly flavored blue cheese such as Roquefort or Stilton, crumbled into pea-sized pieces. (I simply purchase blue cheese crumbles at the grocery store.)

1/4 cup buttermilk (Buttermilk keeps forever and is a great base for home-made dressings)

1/4 cup light mayonnaise

1/4 cup low-fat sour cream

2 teaspoons vinegar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl. It’s ready to serve. It also keeps well in the fridge.


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