Wingggging weekend! After a ton of chicken breast meals (lame) and a few days of barbecuing weather left, wings are a great treat. Reader beware, wings themselves are high in fat and cholesterol, how we prepared them are healthier than the deep-fried, battered, buttered version but don’t eat this weekly and don’t have a months portion in a sitting, yes.. I will judge you. If you haven’t noticed, we are all about moderation, not elimination. What’s great with wings are that spices and low sugar content sauces can add a lot of flavour. So we did a wing versus night. Spicy, saucy, tangy, sticky finger, all over your face sriracha wings and a tasty, crunchy, seasoning-y… cleaner, use one napkin, cajun dry rub wing. We had a tie in our wing off… Which did you prefer?
A few pointers on why this recipe is good food good for you.
Spice vs. sugary sauces. So, the compromise, my husband loves sauce on his wing for flavour and those sauces are high in sugar that is a huge contributor to heart disease. The sauce he made, sweetened with a bit of honey and flavoured with vinegar and sriracha, is a much better version of store-bought BBQ sauce but still high in sodium. The spice blend has no sugar and added panko crumbs for more crunch. Between the two, the dry rub has less calories and half the amount of sodium. Spice over sauce any day, case and point.
Grill vs. fry. Wings taste the best off the grill. You can get the same crisp with the added flavour of char from barbecuing. So why bother with battering and deep frying? Exactly.
4 lbs chicken wings
For Sriracha Sauce:
1/4 cup tamari sauce
2 tbsp honey
3/4 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp Sriracha sauce (or to taste)
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
3 minced garlic cloves
2 sliced, green onions
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
For Panko Cajun Dry Rub:
1/4 cup unseasoned panko, crushed
1/2 tbsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
6 Easy Steps (Instructions):
Step 1: For sriracha sauce, combine all ingredients, but the garnishes, in small bowl. Heat saucepan to low. Pour sauce into pot and reduce until sauce has a thicker consistency, usually 5-10 mins. When done, set aside and let sauce cool while preparing dry rub and wings.
Step 3: To prepare the dry rub, crush panko crumbs in a bowl with the back of a spoon. Then combine all ingredients in the same bowl. Heat a nonstick pan on medium – high. Pour dry contents into a dry hot pan and toast. Stir spice mix continuously or mix will burn for about 1 minute until brown or until it gives off a toasty aroma.
Step 4: Preheat the grill for medium-high. Add wings. Turn every 4-5 minutes for 16-20 minutes.
Step 5: When wings are done, portion them to prepare for seasoning. For sriracha sauce, transfer half of the cooked wings to a bowl, pour the sauce over the wings. Toss wings in the bowl. I like to cover the bowl and give a vigorous shake to get all the wings totally coated. Top with sesame seeds and green onions.
Step 6: For the cajun season, spray the remaining, unseasoned wings sparingly with light cooking spray (PAM etc, just a very quick spray to allow the wing to hold onto a little more rub). Sprinkle rub on wings until coated to liking. Toss wings in the bowl. If needed or desired, sprinkle more of the rub onto the wings and repeat the tossing.