Growing up in Pittsburgh, Pa., Johnson County Community College student chef Lawrence Pesce ate his share of traditional chicken wings.
As a finger food, chicken wings can be messy. But “lollipops” are easier.
“I like the way you are able to eat these wings because they are much cleaner to eat, which is a perk,” Pesce says.
There are three parts to the wing: the tip, the flat middle portion (sometimes referred to as wingette) and the meatier shoulder, known as the drumette. Some stores sell drumettes, but you also can prepare your own.
Pesce cuts off the drumette, through the skin and meat.
He then snips and loosens the skin at the bone end, which is then folded over the meat at the meaty end to create the lollipop.
The drumettes are coated with spices and deep fried. Pesce uses a blend of seasoning he developed that has more spice, but he says a cook can create any seasoning for this dish.
About the column
Cooking 101 is a bimonthly column exclusive to The Star designed to introduce home cooks to basic cooking techniques. The recipe, food styling and photography are a project of culinary students and instructors at Johnson County Community College’s Hospitality Management Program.
Lawrence Pesce, 22, is a culinary student at in the Johnson County Community College and an apprentice at Merchant Pub and Plate in Lawrence.
Chicken Drumette Lollipops With Chili Pepper Sauce and Gorgonzola Dressing
Makes 6 servings
Chili Pepper Sauce:
6 serrano chilies
3 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 cups olive oil
6 red bell peppers, seeded and diced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
6 ounces Gorgonzola cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup parsley
1/3 cup chopped chives
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
3 pounds chicken wing drumettes (about 3 dozen)
Celery and carrot curls, thin sliced and placed in water and left in the refrigerator overnight, to garnish
To make the hot sauce: Roast serrano peppers on a hot grill until skin starts to blacken. Remove from grill and place pepper in a mixing bowl; cover with plastic wrap. After cooled 5 minutes, remove seeds and skin from peppers. Place peppers, garlic, pepper, olive oil, red pepper and vinegar in a blender and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
To make the dressing: Place cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, buttermilk, Worcestershire sauce, parsley and chives in a blender and process for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Blend for another 60 seconds.
Combine paprika, Old Bay seasoning, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Toss chicken in the mixture then allow to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
In a 2-quart sauce pan, place 1 quart of vegetable oil. Place on stove over medium heat and bring the oil up to 350 degrees, add the wings to the oil in batches to avoid overcrowding in the pan or fryer, cook 10 to 12 minutes until all the wings are floating and dark golden brown. Remove drumettes from the fryer and place on paper towel-lined plate or pan to blot excess oil.
Toss cooled drumettes with red pepper sauce, serve with blue cheese sauce and vegetable curls.
Per serving, entire recipe: 1,316 calories (88 percent from fat), 128 grams total fat (25 grams saturated), 80 milligrams cholesterol, 26 grams carbohydrates, 23 grams protein, 1,127 milligrams sodium, 4 grams dietary fiber.