In our ongoing search for the best hot wings in the area and while training for the Ghost Wing Challenge at Girvan Grille, Art and I decided to grill up some hot wings after I read this recipe in order to ensure we were eating some really hot stuff.
I bought two packs of chicken wings on Thursday as well as a large bag of Thai chilies from the Minneapolis Farmer’s Market. I cut up the Thai chilies and added cayenne pepper, fresh black pepper, cumin, and regular red chilies along with 3/4 of a large bottle of Frank’s Red Hot. After stirring that all up, I marinated the wings for several days in the fridge to let them soak in all the tasty goodness.
Art and I decided to meet up at noon on Sunday at his place to give his new grill a workout and enjoy some lunch together. Art had prepared some different sauces that he “kicked up a notch” with fresh habaneros. He took Famous Dave’s Devil’s Spit and added five sliced habaneros, seeds and all, and Anchor Bar’s Hotter Wing Sauce with another 5 habaneros. Art originally remarked that the Anchor Bar Hotter Wing Sauce was more or less like the original, just with more salt but from what we tasted today, the sauce just needed some chicken wings and a few habaneros to turn out as tasty as can be!
We threw the wings on the grill and basted them with the sauce they had been soaking in since Thursday. He had prepared two smoke boxes with mesquite and hickory wood chips to add a bit more to the mix. After swapping between the lower and upper racks a few times, he let them sit on the top and soak in the smoke and grill up to a juicy tenderness never before seen by any fried wings. After bringing the wings inside, Art threw them into his habanero concoctions and let them soak in the sauces for a bit while he prepped brats for the rest of the lunch crew. With some bleu cheese dressing, carrots, and celery to accompany our wings, we sat down to enjoy our creations.
I bit into the Devil’s Spit Habanero wings first and loved how absolutely tender they were. The juices were flowing and you could taste each and every single one of the ingredients that had gone into these treats. With a bit of the hickory and mesquite smoke wafting into my nose I was immediately hit with the Famous Dave’s BBQ flavor. The first few bites didn’t carry the punch I had been looking for but as I chewed on the burn slowly grew in my mouth until I finished the second wing. By that time my tongue was absolutely on fire even though Art claimed the habaneros were not as hot as he’s had them before. Hoping the Anchor Bar sauced wings would cool my mouth down I started noshing on those. Unfortunately they were also just as spicy as there were plenty of habanero pieces floating on top of the wings. Both sauces were quite tasty and if I hadn’t known the ingredients I would have said that these were two entirely new creations thought up by Art himself. I’ll let Art explain what he thought of the wings and his modified sauces below but I figured this photo would be worth more than 1000 words.
While these probably won’t match the spice level of the wings that we will face next Saturday evening, I have a feeling that they have given us a bit of a heads up about what’s to come. I had an absolute blast having lunch with Art and his extended family today and I’m pretty damn sure that grilled wings will be on both of our future dinner menus for years to come!
Check out all the pictures from today’s grilled wing preparation adventure on Flickr here.