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The Weekend Chef

Weekend Chef: Ghost Pepper Hot Wings

Posted 6:40pm on Monday, Jul. 30, 2012

I decided to cook up some hot wings this week in honor of DFW.com's 2012 Hot Issue. And I wanted to make these wings extra hot!

How hot? I am thinking Ghost Pepper hot, using a jar of Mrs. Renfro’s Ghost Pepper Salsa to heat things up in my wings marinade. The salsa is made right here in Fort Worth by family-owned Renfro Foods, and is some pretty hot stuff. The Ghost Peppers used in the salsa actually come from India, and they are 400 times hotter than Tabasco sauce. Yikes!

Ghost Peppers became famous in 2007 when the Guinness World Records listed them as the world’s hottest chili pepper. Since then, other peppers have been cooked up in labs to be hotter, but the Ghost Pepper is still pretty hot.

If you can’t take the heat, you can substitute a milder salsa in the recipe below, or try my Sticky Chinese chicken wings recipe.

Ghost Pepper Hot Wings

  • 1 to 2 cups of Mrs. Renfro’s Ghost Pepper Salsa (use 2 cups if you like “Scary Hot”) I bought my jar at Tom Thumb
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup hard cider (you can substitute a ½ cup of your favorite beverage)
  • ½ cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 2 pounds chicken wings

Mix all ingredients except wings into a bowl to make marinade.

Cut wings into three pieces through the joints. Discard wing tips, add remaining “drumettes” and “flats” to mixing bowl with marinade, making sure the marinade covers the wings. You can also buy wingettes pre-cut.

Let wings marinate in the refrigerator 1 to 4 hours. To cook you can either grill or roast in the oven.

To grill: Preheat grill to medium heat (350ºF) and grill for 40 minutes, turning the wings once at the halfway point (20 minutes).

Oven method: Preheat to 350ºF. Arrange wings on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place baking sheet on the center rack. Cook for 1 hour, turning wings once at the halfway point.

Serve with ranch or blue cheese dressing.

So how hot were the wings?

Pretty hot, but not “daredevil” hot. The heat sneaks up on you, building with each bite, but is also offset by the savory, sweet flavors of the soy sauce and honey.

Be sure to check out the slideshow above for step-by-step pictures.

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