Recipe: Asian Chicken Wings

Comfort food means different things to different people.  To my honey (and likely many more!), it probably means fried chicken; to others, a heaping scoop of ice cream fits the bill.  But for me, I often apply the label to any recipe that comes from my mother, my childhood, my life.  Sometimes the food is just plain ol’ bad for me, but not always.  Sometimes it falls under that catchall term of “American,” though often it doesn’t.  What matters is that the dishes remind me of the happiness I feel when I’m gathered around the table with my loved ones — of the comfort of family.

I make a concerted effort to bring these recipes into the family-of-two I have now, in the hope of fostering that same feeling of warmth and love between us.  Because while we may be smaller in number around the table, I am reminded of that greater connection while we eat and laugh and lick our fingers and enjoy one another’s company.  This is one of those recipes.  This is one that my family has been eating and laughing and licking fingers over for as long as I can remember.  Just  the smell of it makes my day better.  This is comfort food.

A bit of a warning, though: This is NOT date food.  It’s meant to be messy — though I welcome you to eat it primly with knife and fork like a civilized person.  But, if you’re planning to impress someone, I’d say leave this recipe in the drawer…for now. :)

Asian Chicken Wings

Serves 2-3

2 lbs chicken wings (separated into wingettes and drumsticks, wingtips cut off if necessary)
1 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 tablespoon sherry or rice wine
1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 bunch of green onions (scallions), ends trimmed and cut into 1″ lengths
2 tablespoons water
4-6 tablespoons oyster sauce (more oyster sauce = saltier finished product)
1 1/2 cups short grain white rice, cooked according to package instructions, for serving

Marinate the wing pieces for at least 1 hour (and up to 6) in the salt, sherry, soy sauce and green onions.  Agitate the container occasionally to distribute the marinade.

When ready to cook, heat oil in a large fry pan over medium-high heat.  Remove wings from marinade, scraping off as much of the green onions as possible.  Set aside marinade and onions.

Add wings to the pan and brown well on all sides.  Once brown, add oyster sauce, water, and remaining marinade and onions.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until tender.

Serve wings and sauce on top of rice.  Eat with fingers.  Laugh and enjoy.

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