It feels like it’s been forever, guys!
‘Bolt’ is a about a superhero-
-oops, sorry. Different Bolt.
There we go. As I was saying, ‘Bolt’ is a movie about a superhero dog that I had never seen prior to our watch-through. I ended up liking it a fair amount, and I knew exactly what I wanted to do even as we were watching it.
I’m just going to say this up front: This is the best recipe I’ve made for this blog, and close to the top of the list for my recipes in general. This was sooo good. We have a little bit of a wing obsession in our household as it is, and this just escalated that. As I write this, I’m genuinely thinking about going into the kitchen and making the entire thing again. This will be a recipe I use over and over again.
But I’m getting ahead of myself here a little, so let’s go back a bit.
As I’ve mentioned before, I try to find something in each one of these recipes that I’ve never done before, as challenging myself really appeals to me. Originally, I really wanted to do squab wing to play off of the pigeons in the movie. I chose to do a buffalo flavor on them in tribute to Bolt’s time in New York City, and added the waffle as a tip of the hat to ‘Waffle World’, a fictional restaurant chain that is featured. It also doesn’t hurt that chicken and waffles is always an awesome combination.
As I didn’t quite have my poop in a group enough to special order the squab over the internet, I had to go with what our town had to offer. Fortunately, that included chicken feet!
When I mentioned I was doing this, people responded with horror and even anger in one case- ‘Why would you do that?!’
Well, why not?
I’ve been wanting to try making chicken feet for years, since I first saw them on ‘Top Chef’. To be honest with you, while I don’t regret trying it out, cooking chicken feet wasn’t worth the extra work for the small yield they have to them. I didn’t include the chicken feet in the recipe, but (after clipping their toenails), they were treated exactly the same as the wings, so you could definitely still do them if you want to. They weren’t scary, just interesting and kinda fun.
And apparently, polarizing.
Enough of this squawking. (Get it? Chickens? Squawking?) Let’s get cooking!
Buffalo Chicken and Blue Cheese Waffles
Prep Time: 1 1/2 hours
Cook Time: 30 minutes
10 lbs chicken wings, trimmed
1 gallon water
2 cups kosher salt
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons crushed peppercorns
Combine water, kosher salt, sugar and peppercorns in stockpot on stove and heat to a simmer. Cool and then move chicken wings to the water and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, but up to 24 hours.
Rinse the wings under cold running water. Move the wings to the trivet in a pressure cooker and add 1 cup cold water to the bottom of the pot.
Lock the lid on and then cook on high for 30 minutes, making sure the nozzle is closed on the top to allow the pressure to build. When the timer goes off, gently release the pressure and then unlock the top of the pressure cooker and take the lid off very carefully. I may have burned myself with this step. Using tongs, move the wings to a cookie sheet and place them in the fridge to chill until you are ready to fry them.
Homemade Buffalo Sauce
4 oz dried red chili peppers
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup white vinegar
4 tablespoons chopped garlic
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1 cup butter
Place the peppers, onion, garlic, and chicken stock in a saucepan on the stove and simmer for 45 minutes until the peppers are very soft. Pour everything into a blender and puree until thin and smooth. Run the sauce through a strainer to smooth it out and eliminate the seeds. Move the sauce back to the pan on the stove and bring it back to a simmer. Add the vinegar, salt and sugar. This step will really depend on your particular taste. If you like something sweeter, add more sugar, or if you like a real acidic bite, amp up the vinegar. Turn off the heat and add in the butter and continue to whisk until the butter completely melts. Set aside the sauce until you are ready to put your plate together. This sauce can be made ahead of time, and gets a better depth of flavor as it sits. Just keep it in the fridge until you are ready to use it.
Pickled Carrot Salad
4-6 carrots, cleaned and peeled
4 stalks celery, cleaned
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Using your vegetable peeler, cut ribbons of carrots. Then, take the peeler down the back of the celery as well, removing the most fibrous chewy part of the celery. This is a trick that really works for crudite trays as well, making celery easier to eat. After you’ve shaved off the back of the celery, chop it into small pieces and add to a bowl with your carrot ribbons. In a separate smaller bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and sugar. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and stir in. Add the parsley and refrigerate until you are ready to combine everything. This step can also be done up to a day ahead.
Bleu Cheese Waffles and Plating
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons diastatic malt powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 cups buttermilk, room temperate
1 cup salted butter, melted
4 large eggs
3 oz maytag bleu cheese, crumbled
Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, malt powder, baking soda, and salt. In the bowl of your mixer, combine the buttermilk and 1/2 the butter. Add in the eggs. Stir the dry ingredients into the mixer bowl, mixing only until combined. Add in the bleu cheese crumbles. Cover the bowl with a towel and allow the batter to rest for at least 30 minutes.
While you are resting the waffle batter, heat the reheat the buffalo sauce in a saute pan on the stove and heat the deep fryer. Pull the chicken wings out of the fridge and place them next to the fryer so they’re ready to go in when it’s fully heated.
Heat the waffle iron. Brush the iron with the leftover melted butter. Scoop approximately 4 oz of waffle batter into the waffle iron and close. Cook the waffle until it is crispy and golden brown. Place the cooked waffles in the preheated oven so they stay warm while you’re cooking. As you are cooking the waffles (or if you’re able to enlist a sous chef), fry the chicken wings and then add them to the heated sauce on the stove.
When you are ready to serve, place one or two crispy waffles on a plate, and top with a generous amount of chicken wings and carrot salad. Garnish with extra bleu cheese crumbles, a drizzle of melted butter and some honey.
No joke, y’all. If you’re going to make one weirdo recipe that you’ve seen on this weirdo blog, make this one! It’s not nearly as strange as it seems. All familiar flavors with a slightly unique way of putting them together. It was ‘lick the plate’ good. People who know me and eat my food on a regular basis will tell you I’m almost always standoffish about my own food, unwilling to ever give myself credit for my own work or talent toward anything I cook. But this? Is fan-freakin-tastic.
And now to add a note of sadness- Due to real-life adulting responsibilities, I have to take a step back from my side of the blog for a long, long time. Even now, officials are waiting in this auditorium to escort Captain Von Trapp to his new –
Wait, I got off track somewhere in there.
But seriously, I hope to be able to still doing a couple recipes a month for the time being, just maybe not at the speed I have been busting them out. So until next time: