From: American Classics by Editors of Cook's Illustrated
Frank's Louisiana Hot Sauce is vinegary and not terribly spicy. Combine this sauce with a more potent hot sauce, such as Tabasco, to give the wings the proper heat.
Serves 6 To 8 As An Appetizer
• 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 1/2 cup Frank's Louisiana Hot Sauce
• 2 tablespoons hot pepper sauce, such as Tabasco, plus more to taste
• 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
• 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
• 1-2 quarts peanut oil, for frying
• 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 3 tablespoons cornstarch
• 18 chicken wings (about 3 pounds), wingtips removed and remaining wings separated into 2 parts at the joint
• 4 stalks celery, cut into thin sticks
• 2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin sticks
• 1 recipe Blue Cheese Dressing (recipe follows)
1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the hot sauces, brown sugar, and vinegar until combined. Remove from the heat and set aside.
2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking sheet with paper towels. Heat 2½ inches of oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat to 360 degrees. While the oil heats, mix together the cayenne, black pepper, salt, and comstarch in a small bowl. Dry the chicken with paper towels and place in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the wings and toss with a rubber spatula until evenly coated. Fry half the chicken wings until golden and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the fried chicken wings to the baking sheet. Keep this first batch warm in the oven while frying the remaining wings.
3. Pour the sauce mixture in a large bowl, add the chicken wings, and toss until the wings are uniformly coated. Serve immediately with carrot and celery sticks and Blue Cheese Dressing on the side.
BLUE CHEESE DRESSING
Use a mild blue cheese such as Danish blue or Stella Blue cheese from Wisconsin. Both of these cheeses are widely available in supermarkets.
Makes About 1½ Cups
5 ounces crumbled blue cheese (about 1 cup)
6 tablespoons buttermilk
6 tablespoons sour cream
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and ground black pepper
Mash the blue cheese and buttermilk in a small bowl with a fork until the mixture resembles cottage cheese with small curds. Stir in the sour cream, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, and garlic powder. Adjust seasoning with salt and black pepper to taste. (The dressing can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.)