Photos by Sharon Ng.

Here’s the Secret Family Recipe for Uncle Hing’s Chicken Wings

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From the contemporary Vietnamese eatery House Special, co-owners and siblings Victoria and Patrick Do asked their uncle for this secret family recipe that uses a marinade of garlic, fish sauce, and crushed red chili. They shared it with us in 2016, shortly after House Special opened. Please try this at home:


Uncle Hing’s Chicken Wings
Serves four to six

Ingredients

Wings
2 lbs of Wings

Marinade
8 cloves of garlic, peeled
2 cups of cold water
¾ cups of fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1-2 tsp sambal crushed red chili

Uncle Hing’s Sauce
4 cloves of garlic
2 shallots
1 tsp of dried chili flake
200g of palm sugar
1 tbsp of brown sugar
2 tbsp of fish sauce
1 cup of hot sauce (store brand is fine)
1-2 tbsp of unsalted butter (to taste)

Batter
1 cup rice flour
½ cup of corn starch

House Special

Method

Marinade
Chop garlic finely. Add fish sauce and sugar to bowl and mix until dissolved. Combine fish sauce and garlic with water and add two pounds of chicken wings to a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate for six to 18 hours.

Sauce
Mince the garlic and shallots in separate bowls. In a sauce pan, sweat shallots for two or three minutes at medium heat before adding minced garlic, then lightly brown. Add hot sauce and fish sauce to pan and simmer. Break palm sugar into small pieces and add to sauce. Allow sauce to simmer until sugar dissolves. Turn off heat and add butter and dried chili to taste.

Batter
Combine ingredients into mixing bowl. Take wings from marinade and toss in dry batter. Deep-fry at 375 degrees Celsius for eight minutes. In a small sauce pan, heat enough sauce to coat wings and reduce until sugar begins to caramelize, add chicken wings to sauce, and quickly toss to coat.

Plate wings and add chopped cilantro and Vietnamese pickles for brightness. Call it your personal house special.


From the Archives: This story was originally published on July 11, 2016. Try more delicious recipes.  

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April 10, 2020