Alabama White Wings

Geez…it’s been a long time. I s’pose I could give you a dozen reasons why I haven’t done a blog post in a while, but I’m not that kinda guy, this isn’t that type of blog and you probably don’t care. So I’ll just give you one…

Meet Duke
Meet Duke

I’m sure you don’t want to see a ton of baby pics. Nobody does unless they are family or close friends, but let me say he’s already made a pilgrimage to Lockhart. And while he didn’t get to try the brisket (come on, he only had two teeth at the time), I know he’s looking forward to it.

Duke's first trip to Black's BBQ in Lockhart, Texas
Duke’s first trip to Black’s BBQ in Lockhart, Texas

OK. On to the real reason you are here. BBQ. You know my obsession with wings. My fifth food group. Love just about any type of wing out there. I’ll try any kind and I’m always searching for new recipes. So why did it never occur to me to add Alabama white sauce? No clue, but when Mrs. G showed me the recipe in her latest Southern Living, I knew it was on.

Now, I’m no expert on Alabama sauce. Never been there. Never eaten it out at a BBQ joint. I’ve made it once, but I have no idea how authentic that, or this recipe, was, but I was willing to try it. For you guys. ‘Cause that’s the kinda guy I am.

As I mentioned, this recipe came from Southern Living. June 2015 issue, page 118. I did make one change to the recipe. It called for Creole Mustard. I didn’t have any, so I used Gulden’s Spicy Brown Mustard. Didn’t feel like going to the store and I figured it was close enough. Oh, and I didn’t oil my wings and toss with salt and pepper. I skipped the oil and used John Henry’s Texas Chicken Tickler rub, although any good bbq or chicken rub would work.

Alabama White Sauce

  • 1/3 cup Mayo (We use Duke’s)
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
  • 1 Tbsp prepared horseradish
  • 4 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp Creole mustard (or spicy brown)
  • 1 tsp coarsely ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1 finely grated garlic clove

Makes about 2/3 cup which will be plenty for about 3 lbs of wings

Whisk together all the ingredients a coupla hours ahead of time, or overnight if you have the time, and park it in the fridge until you are ready to use

I’m not going to get into how to grill wings again. I’ve done it plenty of times. In fact, I don’t even do them the same way twice anymore. Get your grill somewhere around 400-450F indirect, cook turning every so often until temp reaches 175-180F. Thirty, forty minutes or so. Or a coupla beers. I don’t know. I wasn’t paying attention. Just enjoying the evening You really can’t overdo wings like you can a chicken breast, and that higher temp gets you a crispy skin.

Grill chicken wings indirect
Grill chicken wings indirect

When the wings are done, place them in a large bowl and pour the sauce over and toss to coat.

Getting happy
Getting happy in the sauce

Once the wings are nice and coated, grab a roll of paper towels, or a real towel, dig in and enjoy.

Dinner is served
Dinner is served

I really wanted to have some tater tots on the side, but I remembered I didn’t have what you would call a healthy lunch, so I opted for a salad instead.

I thought the wings were pretty good. Interesting for sure. Creamy and tangy. And messy…like all wings should be. Mrs. G used the words “Unique” and “Different” and “Tangy”. Not my favorite wing ever, but not bad. I’d probably do them again. Maybe even try it with some half chickens or chicken pieces.

Like I said before, I have no idea if the sauce is authentic, so please don’t come cursing me and saying that this isn’t real Alabama sauce. And that no self respecting Alabaman (is that right?) would make it that way. I’m just a guy following a recipe.

I’m gonna try and start writing some more posts again. I’m not gonna promise one a week, or every other week. I don’t want to lie to you or myself. Hell, I might not make one a month. I’ve got other things that are demanding my attention, but when I get time and when I stumble on a good recipes worth sharing, I’ll try to get them up here for you. For now, I’ll leave you with one final parting shot…

Is there anything cuter than a sleeping baby on your lap? Goodnight.
Is there anything cuter than a sleeping baby on your lap? Goodnight.
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Fajita Chicken Wings with a Creamy Chipotle Dipping Sauce

     Some of you may know that yesterday was National Chicken Wing Day (7/29/14). If you lived in my house, you would have known for sure. One of my favorite food holidays of the year. What’s not to love? Crispy, bite sized food? You’re expected to use your hands? People don’t frown down on you if you get a bit messy? And most often come with some kind of tasty dipping sauce? Check, check and check. Sounds like the perfect food group to me.

     I’m always on the look out for a new wing recipe. This time, I used a little influence from growing up in South Texas and a nod to Chris over at NibbleMeThis to come up with my version of fajita chicken wings and a creamy chipotle dipping sauce. A little fusion of Tex-Mex and chicken wings.

Fajita Chicken Wings for National Chicken Wing Day
Fajita Chicken Wings for National Chicken Wing Day

     While Chris’s recipe is a little more in depth with more ingredients and a marinade process, I kept mine fairly simple by just using Fiesta Chicken Fajita Seasoning for two reasons. I like the flavor and I find that marinades can prevent the skin on chicken wings from getting crispy.

Ingredients

  • chicken wings
  • Fiesta Chicken Fajita Seasoning (or any brand you may prefer)
  • cornstarch (optional)
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 2 chipotle peppers, chopped + 1 tsp juice
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream
  • juice of half a lemon or lime
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • dash of ancho chile pepper
  • pinch of sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
Chicken Fajita Seasoning and my lil devil bottle opener
Chicken Fajita Seasoning and my lil devil bottle opener

Directions

  1. Lightly dust your chicken wings with corn starch (optional – this will help the skin get crispy as it cooks). Then dust the wings with fajita seasoning. Arrange the wings in a single layer on a platter and cookie sheet and place in the fridge for at least an hour and up to 12 hours. This process will allow the wings to air dry and will also help them crisp up.
  2. Mix the remaining ingredients in a bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings. Set the bowl in the fridge and allow flavors to marry for an hour or two.

    Creamy chipotle dipping sauce
    Creamy chipotle dipping sauce
  3. Preheat your grill to 400F. If using a Kamado style grill, set it up for a raised direct cook. If using other grills, set it up for a two zone cook (one side with the coals or burners on and one side without) so that you can shuffle the wings back and forth in case of flare ups.
  4. Grill wings for 30 minutes, turning two or three times to ensure even cooking. Keep an eye out for flare ups and move wings to the unlit side of the grill if necessary.
  5. Wings are safe to eat at 165F, but I usually like to take mine to 175-180 to get that crispy skin. Not to worry. The wings will not dry out.
Wings cooking at 400F raised direct. Almost done.
Wings cooking at 400F raised direct. Almost done.

     I went back and forth on what to serve with my wings. On the one hand, I wanted to keep with the Tex-Mex thing and thought about going with Mexican rice. Maybe some boracho beans. But that would require using a utensil and would counter balance part of the fun of wings…eating with your hands. Or I could just go with one of my other favorite foods…Tater Tots!! Yep, tater tots won out.

Wings and tots makes me happy.
Wings and tots makes me happy.

     It’s always interesting to switch things up on wing night. That first bite you expect to get some heat. These wings don’t bring the heat, though. They bring those flavors that you have come to expect from fajitas. Cumin, garlic, onion and a hint of citrus. The Chipotle Dipping Sauce doesn’t serve the same purpose as the normal bleu cheese or ranch that you get with Buffalo Wings. It’s not there to cool off your mouth from the heat from the wings. Most people enjoy their fajitas with sour cream. This sauce gives you that sour cream along with the smokiness of the chipotle peppers and some heat from the cayenne and ancho. Completely optional, but it adds that extra dimension to the wings that really set them off.

Demolished
Demolished

     Next time you are thinking about wings, try thinking outside the box. How could other cultures influence your wings and take them to a whole nother playing field? You might surprise yourself. You just might come up with a recipe that replaces Buffalo Wings as your favorite type of wings.

 

Jalapeno Ranch Dip

J
Jalapeno Ranch Dip

     Looking for a dip to bring to your next party? Then look no further. Mrs. G whipped this up for a party we attended last weekend and it was a hit. I walked outside to say hello to some people and check out what was on the grill. By the time I got back, it was all gone! And there was already three salsas and dips on the table!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of mayonnaise (we prefer Duke’s if you can get it, just for Pete’s sake don’t use light mayo)
  • 1/2 cup Herdez Tomatillo Verde Mexican Cooking Sauce
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 bunch of cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 4-6 jalapenos, deveined, seeded and roughly chopped (we used 5)
  • 2 one oz packets dry ranch dressing mix

Directions

  1. Add the first five ingredients to a food processor and blend until smooth. You may want to start with 4 jalapenos and adjust the heat level by adding more later if it’s not spicy enough.
  2. Stir in the ranch packets and whisk to incorporate.
  3. Serve chilled. The longer it sits, the hotter it will get.
4
Bet’cha can’t eat just one chip.

     Super simple dip recipe that will WOW your friends. Creamy with a little bit of tang from the buttermilk and tomatillo sauce and a bit of kick on the end from the jalapenos. Once you start eating it, you won’t be able to stop until it’s all gone. Or you run out of chips. Whichever comes first.

 

Disclaimer – I have no association with either Duke’s or Herdez and received no incentive or compensation from them. Just products we like, feel free to sub in your favorite brands.

Bacon Wrapped Dove Breast

     I was rooting around in the freezer the other day, looking for something to cook when I came across some dove that I had shot last year. I had totally forgotten about these little beauties. How that happened, I have no clue, but I was super excited.

     If you are a hunter, or live with somebody who hunts, this method of preparation is probably familiar to you. I thought I would share it with you, my readers, anyway. If you ever get ahold of any dove, I highly recommend it. Or you could use chicken instead. I think chicken breasts would work well, but chicken tenders would be even better.

Bqacon Wrapped Dove Breast and Jalapeno Cheese Venison Sausage
Bacon Wrapped Dove Breast and Jalapeno Cheese Venison Sausage

          Prep is really easy. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures of that process to share with you, but I’m sure you can figure it out. All you need is your protein (be it dove or chicken), a few jalapenos, some cheddar cheese (or Monterrey jack or whatever cheese you feel like) and bacon. Home made bacon if you got it, but store bought will work just as well. Get the thinly sliced bacon, not the thick stuff. That takes longer to cook and your protein will end up drying out, which is no bueno.

     Slice your jalapenos in half and de-vein and de-seed them. Then, slice the jalapenos into strips. Lay one strip of jalapeno on your protein.

     Next, slice your cheese into sticks about the same size as your jalapenos. Lay the cheese next to the jalapeno on top of your protein.

     Take a slice of bacon and cut it in half and then wrap your dove, jalapeno and cheese with the bacon. Use toothpicks if needed to hold the bacon in place. Try to make sure that the cheese is covered on both ends to prevent it from leaking out as it cook. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, some cheese will end up leaking out no matter how well you wrap it. 

     Finally, sprinkle on some of your favorite rub on the bacon wrapped dove.

Finished with a little asparagus
Finished with a little asparagus

               To cook, grill the bacon wrapped dove indirectly at 350-400F until the bacon is crispy. On the BGE, I used the Adjustable Rig with the ceramic stone on the bottom level and the grate at the top level. If you do not have an AR, use the plate setter, legs up, with the grate on top. For a gas grill, light half the burners and then place the dove on the unlit site. For a charcoal grill, bank your charcoal on one side of the grill and place the dove on the other side. Cooking times will vary depending on your grill and temperatures, but for me it took about 30 minutes.

All plated up and ready to eat!
All plated up and ready to eat!

     This turned out to be a pretty tasty meal. Even tastier knowing that I had shot the dove. And the venison in the sausage. And made the bacon myself. I didn’t grow the asparagus, but then who grows their own asparagus?

      If you happen to have a bunch of dove and don’t know what to do with it, or you are looking for something else to do with chicken, try out this method. Highly recommended at our house and ranch.

Some Food Porn Pictures

We’ve been busy lately. No excuse for it. Haven’t had much time to work on recipes or post up new stuff and we’ve just been doing old things around here, but I thought I’d share some pictures anyway today. One thing we have been doing is homebrewing. This picture was a few weeks ago when we brewed up an Irish Red. Due to rain and cold weather, we had to brew in the garage.  

Brewing an Irish Red
Brewing an Irish Red

While we were working on the brew, we also had two rack of spare ribs going.

Spare ribs on the Egg
Spare ribs on the Egg

Sometimes you just get a craving for a good burger. These ones were 80/20 ground rib eye. If you can get ground rib eye rather than chuck, I’d suggest trying it.

Ground rib eye burger and ABTs
Ground rib eye burger and ABTs

We recently found thinly sliced brisket at a nearby Asian store. Picked it up not being sure what we were going to do with it. How about using it for ABTs instead of bacon?

Brisket wrapped ABTs
Brisket wrapped ABTs

In an effort to eat better, we pulled the wok out and did some stir fry on the Egg.

Shrimp stir fry
Shrimp stir fry

And how can you resist some leg quarters? Half rubbed with John Henry’s Texas Chicken Tickler and half with Salt Lick Rub.

Chicken leg quarters cooking indirect.
Chicken leg quarters cooking indirect.

Brush ’em with a little Lauren’s Spicy Sauce from Salt Lick and add some home made venison jalapeno cheese sausage.

Almost done.
Almost done.

Served up with some sautéed ‘shrooms and some kale. Um, Um good.

Dinner is served
Dinner is served

I’ll try and work on and finish up some new recipes this weekend to share with you this week. Unless March Madness ends up taking too much of my time. Sorry for the lack of new recipes lately. Hope this food porn will hold you over till then. Thanks for benig patient with us.