Hot-and-Sticky Lemon-Pepper Chicken Wings Recipe
© John Kernick

Hot-and-Sticky Lemon-Pepper Chicken Wings

  • SERVINGS: 4 to 6

Richard Blais explores his British roots at his Atlanta restaurant, The Spence. Lemon curd and malt liquor—both British in origin—are the surprise ingredients in his stellar chicken wings.

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  1. 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  2. 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  3. 1/2 cup prepared lemon curd
  4. 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  5. 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  6. 3 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
  7. 1/2 cup rice flour
  8. 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  9. 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  10. 3/4 cup seltzer
  11. 1/2 cup malt liquor (high-alcohol beer)
  12. Salt
  13. 2 1/2 pounds chicken wings (about 16)
  14. Vegetable oil, for frying
  1. In a saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic; cook over moderate heat until fragrant, 1 minute. Whisk in the lemon curd, lemon juice and 1/4 cup of water and bring to a boil. Off the heat, stir in the hot sauce and pepper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk both flours with the cornstarch. Add the seltzer and malt liquor; whisk until smooth. Season with salt. Add the chicken wings to the batter and turn to coat.
  3. In a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 350°. Scrape the excess batter from the wings. Working in batches, fry the wings in the hot oil for 3 minutes, until the crust is just set and pale golden. Drain on a wire rack and air-dry for 10 minutes.
  4. Return the oil to 350°. Fry the wings a second time, in batches, until deep mahogany in color and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 170°, 5 to 6 minutes. Drain the wings on the rack.
  5. In a large bowl, gently toss the fried wings with the lemon curd-pepper sauce. Transfer the wings to a platter and serve right away.

Suggested Pairing

Classic malty English bitter: Fuller’s London Pride.