RECIPE: Peri-Peri Buttermilk Chicken & Craft Beer

Devouring wings and beer is a rite of passage while watching football.  Even though many establishments drown flour-less fried chicken in a variety of sauces and offer specials on pitchers of watered down beer, I decided to pay homage to the beautiful art of buttermilk chicken wings for the Super Bowl.

Peri-peri or African Bird’s Eye Chili is a pepper indigenous to the continent that packs some heat.  I marinated a dozen chicken wings with a tablespoon of peri-peri, smoked paprika, smoked black pepper, chopped habanero, fresh ginger, mesquite honey, sea salt, garlic, and fresh thyme.  Next, I added enough buttermilk to cover the wings and refrigerated them overnight.  In case you did not know, the acidity of the buttermilk will ensure the chicken is succulent.  Before removing the wings from the fridge, I made a dredge by combining 2 cups of flour with a tablespoon of ground chipotle, peri-peri, sea salt, pepper, and parsley.  My mystery ingredient to get an extra crispy crunchy skin is crushed corn flakes.  I typically add 3/4 cup.  I heated the oil to 350 degrees and cooked the buttermilk then flour dredged chicken for about 12 to 15 minutes.  Once complete, I removed the wings from the oil and let them rest for 5 minutes.

The heat from the peri-peri and habanero is balanced by the mesquite honey.  I served fried brussel sprouts, onion rings, and habaneros with the crispy wings.  To compliment the sourness from the buttermilk, I cracked open a bottle of the sour yet herbal saison, Fuego del Otono by Jolly Pumpkin.  Bon Appetit!!