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A Fiery Take on Tradition: Chinese Chilli Chicken Wings Recipe

If you're looking for a delicious appetizer or snack to serve at your next party, look no further than Chinese chilli chicken wings. This Asian-inspired dish is a popular starter at many restaurants and takeaways, and it's easy to see why. The combination of crispy chicken wings and spicy chilli sauce is sure to be a hit with your guests.

A sizzling wok tosses marinated chicken wings with spicy chili sauce and aromatic Chinese spices

To make Chinese chilli chicken wings, you'll need a few key ingredients. Chicken wings are the star of the show, of course, and you'll also need a dry rub made from smoked paprika, onion powder, cumin, garlic powder, black pepper, oregano, and thyme. For the chilli sauce, you'll need canola oil, brown onion, red chilli, spring onions, soy sauce, and other seasonings. You can also propose the use of seafood in the recipe, such as prawns or squid, to add some variety to the dish.

Once you have your ingredients, it's time to start cooking. You'll need to marinate the chicken wings in the dry rub for at least 30 minutes before cooking them in the oven or on the barbecue. Then, toss the wings in the chilli sauce and serve them hot. Chinese chilli chicken wings are the perfect addition to any buffet or party spread, and they're sure to be a hit with your guests.

Key Takeaways

  • Chinese chilli chicken wings are a popular Asian-inspired appetizer or snack.
  • To make this dish, you'll need chicken wings, a dry rub, and a chilli sauce.
  • You can propose the use of seafood in the recipe, such as prawns or squid, to add some variety to the dish.

Ingredients and Substitutions

A table with ingredients: chicken wings, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, chili, vinegar, and sugar. Substitutions: tofu, tempeh, or seitan for chicken

Main Ingredients

To make delicious Chinese chilli chicken wings, you will need the following main ingredients:

  • Chicken wings: preferably separated in drums and flaps, so that the sauce can cover the meat. You can substitute wings with other parts of the chicken, such as skinless chicken thighs, but the cooking time will change.
  • Garlic: minced or finely chopped for the marinade and sauce.
  • Onion: brown onion, finely chopped for the sauce.
  • Ginger: fresh ginger, finely chopped for the sauce.
  • Red chilli: finely chopped for the sauce.
  • Spring onions: or scallions, thinly sliced for garnish.
  • Sesame oil: for the sauce and marinade.
  • Soy sauce: light or all-purpose soy sauce for the sauce and marinade.
  • Rice vinegar: for the sauce and marinade.
  • Sugar: to balance the flavours of the sauce.
  • Salt and pepper: for seasoning.

Sauce and Marinade

The sauce and marinade are the key to making flavourful Chinese chilli chicken wings. Here are the ingredients you will need:

  • Soy sauce: 1/4 cup.
  • Rice vinegar: 2 tablespoons.
  • Sugar: 2 tablespoons.
  • Salt: 1/2 teaspoon.
  • Pepper: 1/4 teaspoon.
  • Garlic: 2 cloves, minced.
  • Ginger: 1 tablespoon, minced.
  • Red chilli: 1 tablespoon, finely chopped.
  • Sesame oil: 1 tablespoon.

For the marinade, you can use the same ingredients as the sauce, but add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to thicken the mixture. You can also add 1 tablespoon of honey or oyster sauce for extra flavour.

Flour Coating

To give the chicken wings a crispy texture, you will need to coat them in flour. Here are the ingredients you will need:

  • Flour: all-purpose flour, cornstarch, or tapioca starch.
  • Baking powder: 1 teaspoon.
  • Salt: 1/2 teaspoon.
  • Smoked paprika: 1/2 teaspoon.
  • Chinese five spice: 1/2 teaspoon.

You can also add sesame seeds or chilli flakes to the flour mixture for extra flavour.

If you want to make this recipe with seafood, you can substitute the chicken wings with prawns or squid. For prawns, use large, peeled and deveined prawns. For squid, use cleaned and sliced squid rings. The cooking time will be shorter for seafood, so keep an eye on them to prevent overcooking.

These ingredients and substitutions will help you make delicious Chinese chilli chicken wings that are crispy, flavourful, and easy to make.

Preparation Before Cooking

Ingredients laid out on a clean kitchen counter: chicken wings, chilli peppers, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, vinegar, and spices

Marinating the Wings

Before you start cooking, you need to marinate the chicken wings. This will help to infuse the chicken with flavour and make it more tender. To marinate the wings, you will need to mix together soy sauce, sesame oil, minced garlic cloves, chopped green onion, and a little bit of olive oil. You can also add a little bit of seafood, such as shrimp or scallops, to the marinade if you want to add some extra flavour.

Once you have mixed together the marinade ingredients, you should add the chicken wings and toss them to coat them evenly. Then, cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or overnight if possible. This will allow the flavours to develop and the chicken to become more tender.

Setting Up the Baking Tray

When you are ready to cook the chicken wings, you need to set up your baking tray. Preheat your oven to 200°C (180°C fan)/400°F/gas mark 6. Line a baking tray with parchment paper to prevent the chicken wings from sticking.

Next, arrange the chicken wings on the baking tray, making sure that they are evenly spaced out. You can use a mixture of wingettes and drumettes if you prefer. Brush the chicken wings with a little bit of olive oil to help them brown and crisp up in the oven.

Once you have prepared the chicken wings and the baking tray, you can put them in the oven and bake for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, remove the tray from the oven and brush the chicken wings with any leftover marinade. Then, return the tray to the oven and bake for a further 20-25 minutes, until the chicken wings are golden brown and crispy.

That's it! Your Chinese chilli chicken wings are ready to serve. Enjoy them as a delicious appetizer or main course.

Cooking Methods

Chicken wings simmer in a spicy Chinese chili sauce, sizzling in a hot pan. Steam rises as the wings cook, surrounded by vibrant red chili peppers and fragrant spices

If you're looking to make Chinese chilli chicken wings, there are several cooking methods you can use to achieve the perfect taste and texture. Here are three popular methods for cooking Chinese chilli chicken wings:

Baking the Wings

Baking is a popular method for cooking Chinese chilli chicken wings. Preheat your oven to 200℃ / 390℉ and line a baking tray with foil and then a layer of baking paper. Evenly spread the wings on the tray, trying not to overlap, so they cook evenly and get nice and crispy while cooking. Bake the wings for around 25-30 minutes or until they are cooked through and the skin is crispy.

Air Frying for Crispiness

Air frying is a great way to get crispy and healthy Chinese chilli chicken wings. Preheat your air fryer to 390℉ and place the wings in the basket. Cook the wings for around 20-25 minutes, or until they are cooked through and crispy. You can also shake the basket halfway through cooking to ensure the wings cook evenly.

Deep-Frying for Traditional Taste

Deep-frying is the traditional way to cook Chinese chilli chicken wings. Heat up oil for frying in a wok or deep frying pan to around 180℃ / 350℉. Add the wings to the hot oil and cook for around 8-10 minutes or until they are golden brown and cooked through. Remove the wings from the oil and place them on a paper towel to drain the excess oil.

When cooking Chinese chilli chicken wings, it's important to consider the cook time, temperature, and the type of cooking method you're using. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages, so choose the one that suits your taste and preference. You can also add seafood to your recipe, such as shrimp or calamari, for an extra burst of flavour.

Serving Suggestions

A plate of Chinese chili chicken wings, garnished with sesame seeds and green onions, sits next to a small bowl of dipping sauce

Accompaniments

When it comes to serving Chinese chilli chicken wings, there are many accompaniments you can choose from. If you're serving them as a starter or appetizer, you can serve them with a dipping sauce, such as sweet chilli sauce or soy sauce. You could also serve them with a side of fried rice or green onions.

If you're serving them as a main dish for dinner, you could serve them with a side of rice or noodles. You could also add some vegetables, such as stir-fried green beans or bok choy, to make it a more complete meal.

For a snack or party food, you could serve the wings with some toasted sesame seeds or spring onion for garnish. This will add a nice crunch and flavour to the dish. You could also serve them with a squeeze of lemon for a refreshing touch.

Presentation Tips

When it comes to presenting your Chinese chilli chicken wings, there are a few tips that can help make them look more appetizing. Firstly, you can sprinkle some sesame seeds on top of the wings before serving. This will add a nice crunch and flavour to the dish.

You can also arrange the wings on a platter or plate with some green onions or spring onions for garnish. This will add some colour and freshness to the dish. Another presentation tip is to serve the wings on a bed of lettuce leaves. This will not only make the dish look more appealing, but it will also add some texture and freshness.

If you're serving the wings at a buffet or party, you could also consider making a copycat recipe of your favourite Chinese takeaway. This will allow your guests to enjoy the wings in a more authentic way. Finally, if you're feeling adventurous, you could even propose adding some seafood to the recipe. For example, you could use prawns or squid instead of chicken to create a seafood version of the dish.

Storage and Reheating

Chinese chili chicken wings stored in airtight container. Microwave reheating instructions on label. Steam rising from hot wings

Storing Leftovers

If you have any leftover Chinese chilli chicken wings, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. These wings can last up to 3-4 days in the fridge. If you are planning to store them for longer, it is better to freeze them.

To freeze the wings, place them in a freezer-safe container or a ziplock bag. You can store them in the freezer for up to 2-3 months. When you are ready to eat them, you can thaw them in the refrigerator overnight.

Reheating for Best Flavor

To reheat the leftover Chinese chilli chicken wings, you can use the oven, microwave or air fryer. However, reheating them in the oven is the best way to retain their crispy texture.

To reheat them in the oven, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Place the wings on a baking sheet and bake them for 10-12 minutes or until they are heated through.

If you want to reheat them in the microwave, place the wings on a microwave-safe plate and cover them with a damp paper towel. Microwave them for 1-2 minutes or until they are heated through.

You can also reheat them in an air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F (180°C) and place the wings in the basket. Cook them for 5-7 minutes or until they are heated through and crispy.

If you want to add seafood to your Chinese chilli chicken wings recipe, you can use prawns or shrimp. You can marinate the prawns or shrimp in the same marinade as the chicken wings and cook them in the oven or air fryer. They will add a delicious seafood flavour to your dish.

Frequently Asked Questions

A sizzling wok filled with crispy, golden brown chicken wings coated in a spicy, fragrant Chinese chili sauce. Steam rises as the wings are tossed and glazed in the flavorful sauce

How can I make my chicken wings extra crispy in the oven?

To make your chicken wings extra crispy in the oven, you should dry them thoroughly with paper towels before seasoning and baking. You can also try dusting them with a mixture of cornstarch and baking powder, which will help to create a crispy exterior. Be sure to space the wings out on the baking tray to allow for even cooking and crispiness.

What's the best way to coat and cook wings in an air fryer?

When cooking wings in an air fryer, it's best to coat them in a thin layer of oil or cooking spray before seasoning. This will help to create a crispy exterior. Cook the wings in batches, being careful not to overcrowd the air fryer. Cook at a high temperature (around 200°C) for 10-15 minutes, flipping the wings halfway through cooking.

Can you recommend a good pairing for chilli chicken wings with rice?

A great pairing for chilli chicken wings with rice is stir-fried vegetables or a simple cucumber salad. You could also try serving the wings with a side of seafood, such as prawn crackers or crispy calamari.

What's that unique yellow coating I've seen on Chinese chicken wings?

The unique yellow coating on Chinese chicken wings is often a mixture of flour and cornstarch, which creates a crispy, crunchy exterior. Some recipes also use turmeric powder to give the coating a yellow colour.

How do I ensure my wings stay crispy after adding sauce?

To ensure your wings stay crispy after adding sauce, it's best to toss them in the sauce just before serving. This will help to maintain the crispiness of the wings. You could also try brushing the sauce onto the wings instead of tossing them in it.

Is there a secret to making authentic tasting Chinese-style chicken wings?

The secret to making authentic tasting Chinese-style chicken wings is in the seasoning. Chinese-style chicken wings are often seasoned with a mixture of soy sauce, rice wine, garlic, ginger and chilli. Be sure to marinate the wings for at least an hour before cooking to allow the flavours to develop. You could also try adding a touch of Chinese five-spice powder for an extra flavour boost.