Saturday, December 3, 2016

Heston’s Barbecue Chicken Wings

Noel was on a mission recently to cook chicken wings.  This fascination started when we went to the Loch Festival with our gorjus friends Kelee and Dave.  We had the most devine Buffalo Chicken Wings there and the men have been talking about them ever since.

I love the fact that Noel loves to cook and he spends hours googling and reading recipes. However saying this he has been know to create his own marinades - successfully I might add. He recently came across this recipe for Heston Blumenthal's Barbecue Chicken Wings and talked about making them for a couple of weeks.  I have to admit they sounded good on paper but they were magnificent in real life.

To quote the great man himself Heston said "Chargrilled chicken wings slathered in a rich, sticky sauce has got to be one of the all-time barbecue classics. This recipe will have those wings flying off the barbecue faster than you can make them. A little lime marinade to season and soften the meat, a coating of sauce made from the gutsy, punchy flavours and a sprinkle of sesame seeds for a toasted note and some crunch – and you’re good to go. Especially with a cooling, easy-to-make blue cheese dip on the side."

Heston’s Barbecue Chicken Wings
(Recipe adapted from

Serves: 4 – 6

For the barbecue sauce
2 cups chicken stock
100 grams white caster sugar
100 mls rice wine vinegar
200 mls tomato ketchup
1 tablespoon mushroom oyster sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon Tabasco Pepper Sauce, to taste
2 teaspoon Cayenne pepper

For the cheese dip:
300 grams blue cheese
300 ml soured cream

For the chicken wings:
juice of 4 limes
2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoon oil
1 kilogram chicken wings
50 grams sesame seeds, toasted

To make the barbecue sauce, place the chicken stock in a pan over medium-high heat and reduce until it is approximately 150 ml. Place another pan over medium heat, add the sugar and cook until a medium caramel is formed. Slowly add the rice wine vinegar while whisking until the caramel has dissolved. Add the remaining sauce ingredients and whisk until well combined. Set aside.

To make the blue cheese sauce, removing any rind from the cheese, chop into small pieces and add to a bowl with the soured cream, and use a hand blender to blitz until smooth if desired. Put into a small container and allow to stand in the fridge.

When ready to cook, place the juice, salt and oil in a bowl, add the wings and toss until well coated. Allow to stand in the fridge for 45 minutes. Once the time has elapsed, place the wings on the preheated barbecue and cook for 20 to 25 minutes, turning them every few minutes until cooked through with no pink meat. Once cooked, transfer the wings to the bowl with the barbecue sauce and toss to thickly coat. Remove and transfer the wings to a clean bowl then sprinkle over the toasted sesame seeds.

Serve in a bowl with the cheese sauce, celery and any remaining barbecue sauce on the side.

Okonomiyaki お好み焼き - Japanese Vegetarian Pancake

Okonomiyaki (お好み焼き o-konomi-yaki?) is a Japanese savoury pancake containing a variety of ingredients. The name is derived from the word okonomi, meaning "how you like" or "what you like", and yaki meaning "grill".

Okonomiyaki is mainly associated with the Kansai or Hiroshima areas of Japan, but is widely available throughout the country. Toppings and batters tend to vary according to region. Tokyo okonomiyaki is usually smaller than a Hiroshima or Kansai okonomiyaki.

One of Alex's favourite meals is Okonomiyaki. I must admit I love them too.  Either a quick snack or a planned meal they are fantastic. They are jam packed full of goodness and a great way to use up vegetables.

While the traditional Okonomiyaki has cabbage as it's main ingredient and very few others, but you can, in fact, put anything you want into the mix and fry.  Many restaurants offer cooked pork mince, chicken, prawns, bacon, chinese sausage and even noodles - I guess the potential at home is endless.

Okonomiyaki お好み焼き - Japanese Vegetarian Pancake
(Recipe adapted from Okonomiyaki World)

Serves: 2

1 cup plain flour
2/3 cup Water (or Chicken stock)
2 eggs, whisked
ground white pepper
300 grams green cabbage, cut into strips
1 carrot, peeled and grated
100 grams fresh bean shoots
2 spring onions, thinly sliced diagonally
cooking spray
Kewpie Mayonnaise
Okonomi Sauce or Barbecue Sauce

In a large bowl, whisk together flour and water until smooth. Add in eggs mixing to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

Add cabbage, carrot, bean shoots and ¾ of the onions and mix, but don't over mix.

Spray a non-stick frying pan cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add half the Okonomiyaki mixture.

Using a spatula flatten and form pancakes until around 1.5cm thick - approximately 30cm across.

After about 3 minutes, flip over pancake and cook for 4 minutes.

Flip pancake again and cook for 3 minutes or until firm and well browned.

Remove to plate and drizzle with Kewpie mayonnaise and Okonomi or Barbecue sauce. Sprinkle with remaining spring onion.

Eat quickly before someone near you takes your portion.