Super Bowl Sunday is around the corner, and I can't think of anything better to serve than Vietnamese-style chicken wings. Chicken is such a versatile protein. It's used in all styles of cooking. It cooks easily and takes on flavors nicely. Plus, they are inexpensive! So when there's a crowd to please and you're on budget, look no further than fried chicken. Infuse it with some exotic flavor such as tamarind, and you'll have a hot appetizer that will disappear quickly off the plate.
One popular Vietnamese fried chicken recipes is Gà Rang Me Mật Ong. It is crispy fried chicken wings coated in a sweet honey and tangy tamarind sauce. You can also add a spicy kick with Sriracha or sate chili oil. Preparations are simple. Season the wings with salt and pepper. Coat them in corn starch then pan-fry until golden brown. Toss crispy fried chicken in a simple sauce of fish sauce, honey and tamarind. That's it! Crunchy, savory, sour and sweet, it's an appetizer to tantalize all taste buds.
Tamarind & Honey Chicken Wings (Ga Rang Me Mat Ong)
3 lbs chicken wings
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2/3 cup corn starch
Vegetable oil for frying
Tamarind & Honey Sauce
1/2 teaspoon corn starch dissolved in 4 tablespoons water (corn starch slurry)
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon tamarind powder or 50 grams tamarind pulp
Marinate chicken with salt and pepper for at least 30 minutes. Overnight for best results.
Place chicken in a large bag with corn starch. Shake until all wings are evenly coated. Remove chicken from bag and dust off excess.
Fill large pan with half inch of oil and heat on medium high.
Pan-fry chicken evenly on all sides until golden brown. Remove from oil and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil.
In a small sauce pan, add corn starch slurry, fish sauce, honey and tamarind powder. Mix well. Heat on medium high then immediately turn off heat once sauce slightly thickens (about 8-10 minutes). Sauce will thicken more once cooled. If using tamarind pulp in place of tamarind powder, make sure to smash pulp with a spoon to separate it from the seeds and fibers while sauce is boiling. Once sauce thickens, use a small strainer or spoon to remove seeds/fibers from the sauce then discard.
Transfer chicken to a large bowl. Add sauce to the chicken and gently toss for an even coating. Wings are best when served immediately