For Baked Wings
12 chicken wings (about 2 to 3 pounds)

For Maple Chipotle Sauce
1 tablespoon butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup maple syrup
¼ cup cider vinegar
1 tablespoon chipotle pepper
1 teaspoon adobe sauce
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon cornstarch

For Balsamic Honey Glaze
1 cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup butter, cubed
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons soy sauce
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

For Coffee and Bourbon Sauce
¼ cup water
4 teaspoons instant espresso coffee
¾ cup thick barbecue sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons bourbon
1 tablespoon butter


For Baked Wings
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
1. Place foil into a baking pan (about 10 by 15 inches) and spray or coat with non-stick oil.
2. Cut off tips of chicken wings and either discard or use for chicken stock.
3. At the joint of the wing slice into with knife until you find the joint, slicing all the way through until it separates.
4. Place wing pieces skin side up onto foil and bake about 40 minutes.

These should be made shortly before serving. Remove from pan and place on platter with the assortment of sauces. Cover some of the wings with each sauce and leave some for those who want to dip or to eat plain.

Sauces can be made a day in advance and heated in microwave before serving.

For Maple Chipotle Sauce
1. Melt butter in a small pan over medium heat. Add garlic and stir for about 30 seconds.
2. Add maple syrup, cider vinegar, chipotle pepper, adobo sauce and mustard into the pan. Heat and mix.
3. In a bowl mix water and cornstarch to form a roux, then add to chipotle mixture in the pan.
4. Continue heating and stirring until it becomes bubbly. It should thicken. After reducing the heat, continue cooking a couple of more minutes.
5. Put mixture into a blender or food processor and blend until desired consistency is reached, either rustic or smooth.

For Balsamic Honey Glaze
1. In a saucepan, over medium to high heat, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil and reduce to about 1/3. This could take about 5 to 7 minutes.
2. In a bowl, place butter and pour balsamic vinegar over it, blending until it is well mixed and cools down.
3. Add honey, soy sauce and ground black pepper, whisking all together until smooth.

For Coffee and Bourbon Sauce
1. Bring water to a boil and dissolve instant coffee.
2. Stir in barbecue sauce, brown sugar, and bourbon, heating over medium heat until it forms bubbles. Stir and cook over low heat until well blended, about 5 minutes. Add butter and serve.

Recipe courtesy of Julie Geary, Classic Cooks Catering, 2012.

by Victoria Brown: “Buffalo wings anyone?” Chicken wings are a feature of most super bowl party menus, but you don’t have to be a sucker for tradition. Why not shake things up a bit with Julie Geary’s chicken wings 3 ways? Geary, of Classic Cooks Catering, takes a basic baked wing – baked instead of fried - and makes three different sauces so your guests can choose.

The sauces each take a short time to prepare and there’s something for everyone: a bourbon coffee barbecue sauce, a maple chipotle sauce and a balsamic honey glaze. Geary’s favorite is the maple chipotle sauce, which has a sweet, smoky flavor and plenty of kick: “Ooh, that’s hot. Whoa! Lots of spice going on there!”

To make the chipotle sauce you simply heat some butter with minced garlic, add maple syrup, cider vinegar, Dijon mustard and a chipotle pepper with adobo sauce. Add a cornstarch roux and heat some more. You can either cook the sauce a little longer so it breaks down further, Geary's preference, or blend to form a smooth paste.

For the bourbon coffee barbecue sauce, Geary uses espresso coffee powder “because it has a much richer deeper flavor” than regular instant coffee. Adding a deep-colored barbecue sauce accentuates this, while bourbon adds sweetness.

The balsamic honey glaze is a simple, delicate sauce. The most important ingredient is the balsamic vinegar, which is reduced for 6 to 10 minutes to concentrate the flavors. For this reason it is better to choose a high quality balsamic; in Geary’s words, “the better the balsamic vinegar, the better the glaze.” To this she simply adds three further ingredients: honey, soy sauce and butter.

The chicken wings are really easy, they just go straight in the oven on a lined and greased baking tray and come out golden and delicious; “they look like you deep fried them but all we did was bake them in the oven!” For those who aren’t so keen on the sauces – “there’s always one person in the crowd who doesn’t want that sauce” – the wings are good enough to eat just as they are.

You don’t have to let your preparations get in the way of enjoying the party either, “your sauces can be made ahead, chicken wings can be cooked the day of … and you can serve them at room temperature. How easy is that?”

Chicken Wings
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