Monday, January 18, 2016

How To Make Your Own Finishing Salts at Home

The last thing you put on your food is usually the first thing your guests will taste.

Someone once told me that in a cooking class and I have found it to be quite true.  That's why one of the last things a chef does is taste and adjust seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.  We take advantage of this at competitions, adding a little smoke, salt, and/or heat at the very end of cooking.

how to smoke ribs kamado, BGE ribs, Grill Dome ribs, Primo ribs

Salt brings out and enhances the natural flavors of food. Finishing salts are a great way to do that and add a dramatic flare to your meals.  A small sprinkle of fleur de sel wakes up the taste of your food.  But a flavored finishing salt does even more by building on top of the flavor profile of your dish. 

Pro kitchen tip:  Using a fine, flavored salt at the end of cooking elevates your dish.

Adam Perry Lang has several recipes for gourmet finishing salts in his most recent book, Charred and Scruffed. His process is different than just seasoning salt with some dry herbs and spices.  The liquid dries onto the salt as it re-crystalizes in the dehydrator imparting intense tastes.

I have made a few of them with good results.  Recently,  I "borrowed" his process and came up with a few finishing salts of my own.

how to make finishing salts, how to improve BBQ, cooking techniques
Collection of finishing salts, L to R:  Lime-Coriander, Worcestershire-Shallot, Lemon-Bourbon-Honey, and St. Augustine Beach Sand.

Basic Process
APL's process starts with 1 cup of very coarse sea salt.  He adds about 1/3 cup of an intensely flavored liquid and 1-2 tablespoons of aromatics, herbs, or other seasoning.  He mixes it all together and then dries in a dehydrator at 105°f for 10-12 hours.  He grinds it and puts it back in for another 2 hours and then it's done.  

The salt needs to be as coarse as you can find.  We have had good success with Alessi coarse sea salt that we can get locally.  One of these containers will get you 2 batches.  We sift ours through a sieve for the fine salt and keep what doesn't go through for a coarse batch.  Fine salt works better as a finishing salt but I liked to have the coarse on hand too.

We use this Nesco dehydrator which we bought a year or two ago.  We've been happy with it.  It works well, operates quietly, and cleans up easily.  If you don't have one, APL says you can also use the lowest setting on a convection oven with the door propped open.

Lime Coriander Salt
Lime Coriander Salt
This is one of APL's recipes.  Add 1/3 cup fresh lime juice and 1 tablespoon each of lime zest, coriander, and a crumbled dried red chile.  Mix together with your cup of salt, spread it out, dry it out, and grind up.  (Note:  He puts the chile in after grinding, I like it ground up in there.)

This one would go good on grilled seafood, chicken, and anything Tex-Mex.  APL says it's also good on pork, specifically pulled pork.

Worcestershire and Shallot Salt

Worcestershire and Shallot Salt
Add 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce and 1 1/2 tablespoons dried shallot to 1 cup of coarse salt.   Spread it out, dry it out, and grind it up.  Add 1 tablespoon of fresh ground black pepper and dry for 2 more hours.  We bought this package of dried shallots on Amazon and have used it in rubs and sauces but you could use 1 tablespoon of dried onions instead.

This one obviously goes well with beef.  Sprinkle the fine salt on sliced steaks, roasts, or ribs. I want to try the coarse ground salt on a brisket as a dry brine.

Lemon Bourbon Honey Salt

Lemon Bourbon Honey Salt
How can you go wrong with those ingredients?  One cup of coarse sea salt, zest of one lemon, 1/4 cup honey, 3 tablespoons bourbon, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice.  Spread it out and dry in a dehydrator at 105°f for 10-12 hours.  Grind it up and put back into the dehydrator until dry and no longer sticky, about 8 more hours for us.

Tip:  Most honey you can buy in the stores is either adulterated with corn syrup and other sweeteners or not honey at all (Tests Show Most Honey Isn't Honey).  Find a local supplier - we buy ours from beekeeper and pitmaster, Ken Hess.

This has a bright, slightly sweet and subtlety smoky flavor that is perfect for BBQ.

St Augustine Beach Sand

St. Augustine Beach Sand
One cup very coarse sea salt, 1-2 habanero chile (seeded and diced), zest from 1 lime, 1/4 cup lime juice, and 1-2 ounces of silver tequila.  Spread it out and dry in a dehydrator at 105°f for 10-12 hours.  Grind it up and put back into the dehydrator until dry, about 2 hours.

This is great for grilled chicken, seafood, and anything TexMex.  It has a citrus kick, surprisingly mild heat, and the tequila flavor is in the background.  It has a tropical flare to it but it got it's name when Alexis saw it spread out on a plate and declared it looked like beach sand.  The name stuck.

The Gulf Coast of Florida has squeaky white sand but where I grew up in NE Florida, sand is full of small pieces of broken shells and it looks like this salt.

Tequila lime habanero salt recipe
I used one habanero but should have gone with two because it was relatively mild in heat.

St Augustine Beach Sand before grinding. Notice this is on parchment paper so it doesn't fall through the dehydrator trays.  It worked but the salt stuck to some of the parchment.  It was easier using plates instead.

Sifting the salt.  You could simply throw the coarse parts back into the grinder to process again. But I wanted to coarse salt too.

finishing salt recipe
St Augustine Beach Sand after grinding. 
Ball rub jars, spice jars for BBQ, BBQ rub jars, flip top spice top
 Someone asked me about the salt shakers we use for dry rubs.  They are just Ball "jelly jar" sized jars with the Ball flip top shaker lid.  We get ours at Target but you can also buy them online.  These are great if you make a lot of your own rubs.

Finishing Salt Put To Use
I couldn't wait to try the Lemon Honey Bourbon salt on a rack of ribs.  At competitions, some pitmasters hit the sauced ribs with a little fine salt to bring out the flavors.  I hoped the lemon would brighten the flavor, the honey enhance the sweetness, and the bourbon bring out the smokiness.

I stumbled onto Cheshire Heritage Farms at independent grocery store, Butler and Bailey, in Knoxville.  No junk in the pigs, no junk in the packaging.  They are thick and perfectly trimmed St Louis style.  The pork has good flavor.  I will be using these in competitions this year.

best ribs for competition, rib supplier, heritage pork
I had a knife out but didn't have to touch it, the ribs from Cheshire are perfectly trimmed.  Seasoning was black pepper and a 50/50 mix of Meat Church Deez Nuts and Smoking Guns Hot.

pork ribs
I smoked the ribs in "Big Blue", my Grill Dome kamado smoker and grill. Two and a half hours naked at 275-285°f, 45 minutes wrapped (with agave, butter, brown sugar), and finished naked until nice and "bendy".
kamado ribs, competition style ribs, Vision grill ribs
A quick glaze of my BBQ sauce and then back into the smoke for 8-10 minutes.

Kamado smoked ribs, BGE ribs,
Sprinkling with the Lemon Honey Bourbon salt, it doesn't take much.  Maybe 1 teaspoon for the whole rack.  It's important to spread the salt evenly and lightly.
BGE rib recipe, how to kamado smoke ribs, primo ribs, Komodo ribs
Grill Dome nailed 'em again.  Could I taste the lemon, honey, or bourbon?  No, you shouldn't be able to taste them individually.  It's supposed to bring out and enhance, not cover up.

There are a few other things we want to try.  I want to make a finishing salt for pork using Apple Pie flavored moonshine and maybe some cinnamon.  I also think it would be good to stick the wet salt mix into a smoker for a bit before putting it into the dehydrator.  

[FTC Standard Disclosure]  Grill Dome is the official kamado sponsor for my blog.  I received no compensation for this post otherwise.  I paid full price for the dehydrator, the jars, Adam's book, and Cheshire pork. 

Friday, January 15, 2016

How to Make Deli Style Cajun Roast Beef Lunch Meat at Home

I like to make lunch meat at home. 

Why?  I don't like getting processed lunch meat - "chicken breast" for example - that comes in a perfectly half round shape that resembles nothing like a chicken's breast.  When it's an unnatural shape like that you can just about guarantee that it's meat pieces and "meat glue" (transglutaminase) pressed into some kind of mold.  Granted, there are some good producers out there but here is what I do to make mine at home.

Make your own deli lunch meat with this cajun roast beef recipe

Go Lean
I try to pick lean meats for making lunch meat.  For beef, I like top sirloin petite roast and eye of round.  For roast pork, the pork loin does good and for poultry I'll use a boneless turkey breast.  The reason for lean meat is to minimize fat which will be the first thing to go bad.  
The most important chemical damage suffered by meats is the breakdown of their fats by both oxygen and light into small, odorous fragments that define the smell of rancidity.  Rancid fat won't necessarily make us sick, but it's unpleasant.  (McGee 145)
Nobody likes rancid meat right? So pick low fat meats (saturated fats are more stable than unsaturated fats) and protect them from light and oxygen.

Dry Brine
I use a dry brine for seasoning the meat.  The way it works is the salty seasoning initially draws moisture out of the meat, causing an imbalance.  Then that moisture mixes with the seasoning and it gets pulled back into the meat, seasoning it. I do this in a vacuum sealed bag which protects it from oxygen and some people say it helps the seasoning get into the meat better (I have doubts and have seen nothing scientific backing that second part).  Honestly, I do it mainly to save space in the fridge.  I can stick a vac sealed package anywhere in the refrigerator but a big pot filled with brine takes up a lot of space.

Sous Vide
People either love or hate sous vide.  As a griller, a reverse seared steak is similar in texture/doneness to a sous vide steak but tastes much better because of the smokiness.  But with lunch meat I like to use sous vide for 2 reasons - both have to do with how long the meat is held at certain temps.
  1. Tenderness - Two enzymes that break meat down in to tender, flavorful bits are most active at warmer temperatures up to 105°f (calpains) and 120°f (cathepsins) per McGee (144).   The sous vide warm water cooking will hold the meat in that high enzyme activity window for much longer than the less than 1 hour that the reverse sear would.
  2. Pasteurization - By holding meat at lower, steady temps for longer periods of time, sous vide effectively pasteurizes the meat.  Holding the meat at temp for those extended hours gives me a level of personal comfort, knowing that the food is safe and how it was handled.  That's especially important since I want this lunch meat to last for several days and microbes bring spoilage.  Read more.
For the Cajun Roast Beef, I used a 4.45 pound Angus eye of round.    I tied it to give it a uniform shape.  

Cajun style roast beef, homemade lunch meat

Mixed up a batch of my NMT Cajun Rub.

I seasoned the roast heavily, about 2-3 tablespoons.

tied seasoned roast beef, roast beef in Grill Dome

I vacuum sealed this and let it dry brine in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

sous vide roast beef, Grill Dome roast beef

Then I put it in the sous vide set up.  I am using the Sous Vide Supreme which is a counter top appliance type unit.  There are wand style units now that take up less storage space because you supply the container.  There are also guides online for how to make your own.

I ran the sous vide at 125°f for the first 12 hours and then 18 hours at 137°f.  

sous vide roast beef

Then I fired up my Grill Dome kamado grill to 550°f.  I removed the roast from the packaging and seared it 1 minute per side.  The meat is already cooked, I am just building flavor and color.

After searing, I put the meat on a raised rack and let it cool off.  Then I wrapped it up and put it in the fridge until the next night.  Being cold makes it much easier to slice whether you are doing this by hand or powered slicer.  I prefer the knife just because I haven't found a consumer grade meat slicer that I like.  They all seem undersized and under powered.  I don't think I'll be happy until I get a commercial slicer like Hobart.

We made roast beef sandwiches with El Diablo mustard and horseradish that couldn't be beat.  

roast beef sandwich, homemade roast beef, sous vide roast beef
Homemade deli syle Cajun roast beef sandwich with bacon Swiss soup.

I didn't write down the bacon Swiss soup recipe but it was stock based.  Here's the short version if you want to make something like it.  Mirepoix sauteed in butter, seasoned with salt and pepper, and flour added for a roux.  Whisked in 3 cups of chicken stock and then simmered for 30 minutes.  Smoothed it out an immersion blender.  Then I added dried thyme leaves, some spicy mustard, and tasted for seasoning, adding a little salt and pepper.  Then I added about a cup of quality Swiss cheese, stirring until blended.  We serve it with a dollop of sour cream and crumbled bacon.

Competition BBQ Update
There have been some updates regarding the Knoxville area competition BBQ scene recently. 
  1. The Rotary Club has announced that they will not be putting on the Rocky Top BBQ contest that Knoxville has hosted for the past 3 years.
  2. Bloomin' BBQ and Bluegrass in Sevierville will NOT be on the same weekend as Memphis In May this year which is awesome because I have hating choosing one or the other in the past. 
  3. BarBCure, a KCBS event that raises funds for The Butterfly Fund, will be held again in Knoxville on the beautiful grounds of the The Pavillion Event Center at Hunter Valley Farms.
  4. The Big BBQ Bash in Maryville TN, a personal favorite of mine, will be held the weekend of June 24-25. 
Of course, as always, you can just check the KCBS site for the latest information for BBQ events in your area.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Porterhouse Steak with Poblano and Portobello Hash

What is your favorite steak?

I have a really difficult time nailing that one down.  One that has to be in the running is the porterhouse steak because it is actually two steaks in one.  On one side of the bone you have what is the New York strip steak - beefy in flavor and it has a slightly denser texture.  On the other side you have the tenderloin - delightfully tender and mild tasting.

A porterhouse steak (IMPS 1173) and a T-bone (IMPS 1174) look similar, what's the difference? Location and size.  The T-bone is trimmed from the front of the loin (towards ribs) while the porterhouse is cut from the rear of the loin.  Because of this the porterhouse will have larger portions of the filet and strip compared to a T-bone.  I'm not sure if it's a standard or not, but the general rule of thumb is that if the filet is 1.5 inches wide or more, it's a porterhouse and if it is less, it's a T-bone.

Picking a porterhouse at the store is pretty much the same as other steaks.  Look for steaks that are at least 1 1/2 inches thick, have deep red coloring and fine marbling throughout.  Of course, pick the one with the bigger portions of strip and tenderloin.

Because it's really TWO steaks, the porterhouse is a great one to share.  Many top steakhouses, like Luger's, serve the porterhouse on a large platter with the strip and filet already sliced, ready for sharing.

Here's a porterhouse that Alexis and I shared for New Year's Day.  The steak is seasoned simply with quality salt and pepper so it can shine on it's own merits.  The hash is a bold flavored departure from the boring baked potato.  

how to cook steak on big green egg, how to cook steak on kamado grill, grill dome steak

We cooked this on our Grill Dome Infinity Series kamado grill so I cook the veggies first since the cooking temps will rise.  If I did this on a kettle grill I'd probably cook the steak first while the fire is it's hottest and then cook the hash as temps trail off a bit. On a gas grill you could do it either way since it's easy to raise or lower cooking temps.

Porterhouse Steak with Poblano and Portobello Hash

Published 01/6/2015


  • 2 porterhouse steaks
  • coarse ground black pepper to taste
  • quality coarse sea salt to taste
For the hash
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil or other high temp cooking oil
  • 8 ounces Baby Bella or Crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 poblano chile, seeded and diced
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 pound B sized potatoes, parboiled 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ancho chile (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin


  1. Set up your grill for direct heat and preheat to 350°f.  
  2. Preheat your skillet and then add oil once it is hot.  Wait until the oil begins to shimmer, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the mushrooms and poblano chile and cook, tossing occasionally, 4 minutes.  Keep the grill lid closed as much as possible to keep the fire under control.
  4. Add the onions and cook until tender, tossing occasionally, about 6 minutes.
  5. Add the potatoes, salt, pepper, chili powder, ancho chile (if using), granulated garlic, and cumin.  Cook, tossing occasionally until the potatoes are cooked through, about 2 more minutes.  
  6. Remove the wok, cover with lid or foil to keep warm.
  7. Raise the temperature of your grill to 500-550°f.  
  8. Season the steak with black pepper and salt to taste.  Grill until the internal temperature reaches an internal temperature of about 127°F for medium rare, about 4 1/2 minutes per side.
  9. Remove and serve with the poblano hash.
Yield: 4 servings

porterhouse steak on the grill dome, how to cook steak on a kamdo grill, how to cook steak on a big green egg
Mise en place.

wok grilling, stir fire,
If you have wood handles on your wok, cover them in foil.  Mine are over 6 years old and have gotten darker but have not burned yet.

Someone in a Facebook group asked me about my wok.  It is just a cheap one that I bought from a local Asian grocery store.  They had a stack of them and no two were the same.  When I get ready to replace it, it will be something with features like this one :
  • 14" fits nicely in average sized kamados
  • carbon steel is low maintenance and lasts almost forever
  • flat bottom so it can sit on a grate (Round woks cook better but you have to use a wok ring or spider rig every time due to the curved bottom.)
  • Double handles fit inside the kamado grill as opposed to the long straight handle mine has.

steak side dish, grilled side dish, Grill Dome side dish, wok big green egg, recipe ideas big green egg
When you stir fry, saute, or other high temp cooking methods using a pan on the kamado grill, your cooking temperatures will rise from the frequent influx of air from opening the lid.  My basic strategy is 1) start off at a lower cooking temperature, 2) keep the bottom vent closed down as much as possible when the lid is open (watch for back flash), and 3) work quickly. 

kamado grilling techniques, stir fry kamado
You can also use a cast iron pan, a grill topper, or any other grill safe cooking vessel.  I just like using a wok most of the time because of personal preference. 

kamado side dish, how to use wok on grill
By the time you are done with the hash, your grill should be pretty close to the 500-550°f that you want for grilling the steak.

beef, steak, porterhouse steak, steak BGE, grill dome steak, kamado joe steak
Strip steak is on the left side and the roundish part on the right is your beef tenderloin.  On a T-bone that part will not be as wide and often is more triangular shaped instead of round.

When you do basics like just salt and pepper, quality is especially important.  I used a blend of Himalayan pink salt, Hawaiian red clay sea salt, and Hawaiian black sea salt from Galena Garlic.

steak on Grill Dome, beef on Grill Dome,
As always, cook times and temps will depend on a myriad of factors.  But in general, I like 4ish minutes per side at 500-550°f for medium rare.  Of course I go by touch and checking internal temperature with my trusty Thermopen

  As always, rest your flat meats on a resting rack.  This keeps the heat from being trapped between the meat and a tray, which steams the bottom and lets more juices drain out. Do a side by side comparison with hot steaks some time and you'll see. (Excuse the blurry photo, it was dark and cold so I was in a hurry to get this inside.)

beef, steak, grill dome steak
I hit it with just a little more of the finer Himalayan salt as it rested and the flavor was off the charts. 
Chick-fil-A - "I never slaw such a thing"
Trevor and I went to the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl for the FSU-Houston game on New Year's Eve. 

Well aren't you Ms Sally Killjoy?


Kick off! 

That very day, Chick-fil-A had some good news and bad news for fans of their coleslaw.  The bad news is that they are taking slaw off of their menu as of 01/18/2016 to make room for lighter fare.  The good news is that they are releasing their slaw recipe before pulling it from their line up.  Here's the recipe courtesy of Chick-fil-A.  

[FTC Disclaimer]  Grill Dome is our official kamado sponsor.  We have no affiliation with Chick-fil-A, Galenta Garlic, or any other brand mentioned.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Thai Sticky Wings Two Ways

It's New Years Day 2016 which means there are a TON of college bowl games on today.  It also means there are TONS of chicken wings being consumed.  

tailgating, wings, dry wings, dry rubbed wings
These are our Naked Cajun Wings from a previous post.

If you are looking for some last minute game day recipes for today, here is our favorite chicken wing - Thai Sticky Wings done two different ways:
  1. From Scratch - My BBQ teammate, John, demonstrates how to make these sweet, mildly spicy, Asian style wings and
  2. Quickie Version - Using a store bought sauce, these wings are also good but let you focus a little more on the game.
From Scratch
Chris put this recipe in his excellent book “The Kamado Smoker & Grill Cookbook”, available from Amazon.  I first got to taste this recipe at our second KCBS competition in Franklin NC.  Chris’s sister Rhonda cooked it for the Anything But category, and took 3rd place with it.  I thought they were the best chicken wings I ever had and knew that this would become a staple cook for football season.  Great tailgating food.  

The sauce is what makes it; sweet creamy heat I call it.  The peanut butter, cashew butter or almond butter gives it that creaminess and lingering finish, The Mr Yoshida’s gourmet sauce gives it that unique Asian sweetness, the red pepper jelly adds to the sweetness and adds a small layer of heat to the sriracha sauce, creating the perfect heat.  Try it. You’ll be IMPRESSED.

First off trim the full wings down to pieces.  I learned this technique from Chris. Bend the knuckle and slice into it between the bones (watch your fingers) and then on the cutting board finish cutting the joint.

chicken wings, how to trim buffalo wings
I learned this technique from Chris. Bend the knuckle and CAREFULLY slice into it between the bones (watch your fingers).
Then finish cutting through the joint on the cutting board.

Once you are done trimming, place the wings on a cooling rack in a sheet pan and air dry in the refrigerator for 1 hour.  This helps the skin to crisp up when cooked.  While you are waiting make the rub and sauce.

For the Rub:  (This recipe will work with up to 20 wing pieces)
1 tablespoon Kosher or Sea Salt
2/3 teaspoon Fresh Ground Black Pepper
2/3 teaspoon Granulated Garlic
1 teaspoon Corn Starch
1/2 teaspoon Ground Ginger

For the Sauce: (This recipe will work with up to 20 wing pieces)
1/2 cup Red Pepper Jelly
1/4 cup Mr. Yoshida’s Original Gourmet Sauce
2 tablespoon Cashew or Peanut Butter*
2 tablespoon Sriracha Sauce**
* Chris prefers Cashew Butter and I can’t complain with that, but good ol peanut butter works as well too.
** To control heat add less or more sriracha sauce and even crushed red pepper to really kick it up

  1. Set up your Grill Dome Kamado cooker for indirect cooking and a target dome temperature of 400.
  2. After the wings are done air drying, lightly sprinkle the rub on each wing.
  3. We are using the 30-20-10 cooking method that Chris has explained on this site in the past.
  4. Place wings on grate making sure to have a drip pan under the wings. After 30 minutes flip the wings and cook for 20 more minutes.
  5. Pull the wings and place in a heat proof bowl and pour about 3/4 of the sauce over and mix well.
  6. Place the wings back on the grill for 10 minutes to let the glaze/sauce set up.
  7. Remove wings and add the additional sauce if desired.
  8. Enjoy with your favorite beverages.

30-20-10 wing method, Grill Dome wings, Big Green Egg wings
Wings are rubbed and ready to go on the Grill Dome.

Grill Dome preheated to 400f.

kamado wings, BGE wings, kamado joe wings,
Wings getting happy on the grill.  This was after the flip and right before saucing.

Saucing the wings, before putting them back on for the final 10 minutes. It's just to cook on the sauce so it might not take the full 10 minutes, check after 5.

Bowl of finished wings.

This was my third cook of the day and I lost focus a bit and did cook longer than the 30-20 minutes, as a result the wings were overdone, still very good but overdone.  I suggest keeping a very close eye on the 30-20-10 times.  In Chris’ book he calls for 375 degrees for the dome temperature.  I have tried it there but felt the skin was a bit more rubbery at this temp so I cook at 400 which means you better stick very close to the 30-20 or risk over done like mine were.  Chris also reports very good results going raised direct at 375 dome but I have not tried this.  If you try this make sure your cooking grid is as high in the dome as you can get it to avoid flare ups and burnt glaze.  Chris also uses cilantro as a finishing garnish which you certainly can do, but there will be no cilantro on my wings.  These are the best wings I have ever had and most people agree after they try them too.

Quickie Version aka Cheating
We cooked a tailgate for the Tennessee-South Carolina game this year for our older son and his friends.  We did a full spread with barbecue pork, smoked brisket, sides, and I added these short cut wings to the menu at the last minute.  The wings are quicker due to using a store bought sauce and direct grilling instead of indirect.

It was a rainy, cold, miserable day but we still had a great time.  I cooked the wings on one of our Pit Barrel Cookers - our tailgating smoker/grills.

While the sauce given in the full version has more depth of flavor by far, people still loved the easy version.  The secret was using Frank's RedHot Sweet Chili Sauce.  We stumbled on it at Gordon Food Services and I took a gamble since I'm a fan of Frank's. 

Yeah, I actually bought a half gallon of the stuff.

Franks Chile Wings
The sauce is thick and visibly full of chiles and seasonings.  If it is too thick for your preferences, you can thin it out with a little bit of rice wine vinegar but it works either way. 

Mix together a quick rub (for 20 wing pieces):
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Meat Church Season All or other seasoned salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
Season the wings with the rub.  Spread them on a plate or tray and place them in the fridge for an hour to dry (if you have time).  

Preheat your grill to 375f-400f.  Set the grill up for "raised direct" which just means you will use an elevated grill grate.  This could be just the upper rack of a gas grill.  If you are using a charcoal grill with an adjustable charcoal tray, lower it down to the bottom half of your settings.  For a kamado grill like my shiny blue Grill Dome, just use Grill Extender or home made raised grid.

Put them on the raised grid, close the dome, and cook them for 15 minutes.  Flip and cook until they reach an internal temperature of at least 180f, about 10 more minutes.

Raised direct grill dome
Notice the raised grate. This helps you cook the wings directly without having to flip them every 5 minutes or so.

As soon as the wings are done and still very hot, toss them with about 1/4 cup of the Franks RedHot Sweet Chile Sauce to coat.  Garnish with some green onion if you like and serve with additional sauce for dipping.

Asian chicken wings, tailgate wings, wing recipe, Franks Red Hot Wings

So there you go - two delicious versions of our Thai Sticky Wings.  Thanks to John for his write up of the from scratch version!

PS: Speaking of John and New Years - if you live in Knoxville and made that New Year's resolution to get into shape, get in touch with John at Snap Fitness on Middlebrook Pike

They will get you set up with no hassle, low fees, and their gym is really friendly and welcoming.  He didn't ask me to add that but I just thought I would throw it in.

[FTC Standard Disclosure]  I received no compensation for this post.  Grill Dome is our official kamado sponsor.  Pit Barrel Cooker is a tailgating sponsor.  I paid full price for the Frank's and Meat Church products.