Up until my first BBQ competition some months ago, I have never been a wing guy. There’s not much meat on them, and there was always something odd about the bones.
Well, let me rephrase that. I had wings at Hooters with an excellent friend a couple of years ago, and they were super hot and firm. Nice tender wings served in a basket with fries. They were served with a wonderful smile.
My friend and I had a super cool boys weekend in Philadelphia, perhaps a little bromance. We were attending a fantastic concert with Live and Bush. Before the concert, we walked around Philly, had the mandatory cheesesteak sandwich, and caught up on good old times. On the way home, the day after the concert, we stopped at Hooters. Just what boys do, I guess!
Anyway, ever since I scored 2nd place in a local wing BBQ competition, I have developed a newfound love for these little snacks. And I also discovered that the wings experience is completely based on the wing’s quality, technique, and the sauce.
You can obviously buy the frozen wings in the supermarket. But, I find these rather weak in meat quality and some disturbing cuts through the bones. They are mass-produced and probably from a chicken factory where they are not cared for.
Now, when I go shopping, I will look for good quality wings. If I find some, I’ll buy them and freeze them, just if my friends happen, stop by beer, fire pit, and some wings. My parents always had cookies and coffee ready. I have wings and beer.
It has given me excellent excuses to test and perfect my wings on the Traeger. Here is my approach for the Wicked Wings. You can make them fairly quickly.
- A few pounds (lbs) of good quality wings
- 2 bottle of beers
- A large oven tray with a grate
- Hot sauce of your choice
- I can highly recommend these sauces
You need to allow for at least one hour for the wings to get ready. It gives you time to enjoy a beer with your mates while listening to cool music on your DemerBox – or any other outdoor speaker.
- Pad the chicken wings dry
- Place them on the grate, in the oven tray
- Preheat your oven to 350F
- Season the chicken wings with pepper
- Pour in 1-2 beers in the tray, but make sure it does not reach the wings
- Bake and steam the wings for 35 mins in the oven
- Preheat the Traeger smoker to 500F
- When chickens are ready in the oven, transfer them to the Traeger
- Grill them for 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 190F
- Take them out and let them cool for 5-10 minutes
The wings are served without sauce at my place, as I want my guests to choose the sauce they like. There’s no point smothering them in spicy hot sauce if people do not like spicy shit.
It’s finger food, so serve the wings on a large cutting board with the sauces on the side and a shitload of kitchen paper towel. And of course, with a few cold beers.
You could also just be selfish and grill a large portion of wings for yourself, as a snack instead of the usual M&Ms or popcorn. Treat yourself to the good life!
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