Poultry requires very careful handling to avoid foodborne illness and in the culinary field the dreaded cross- contamination.

Poultry should be used with within two days of purchase or frozen immediately as I do when I purchase large amounts of cut poultry like bulk packaged chicken breasts or thighs, legs and rarely only if required wings come from recognized sources like SAM’s or COSTCO.

The next step is critical and time sensitive to prevent contamination.  Against all rules,  I wash either the breasts, boneless and skinless thighs in deep underneath cold water, no splashing for cross contamination, portion them, pat dry and double seal them in food wrap till I’m ready to use them. I also have an ultraviolet food lamp when sealing.

Some are telling you not to wash chicken parts because you have to be careful as these parts may contain bad boys and splashing them all over the kitchen can contaminate.  I have a system and it is safe.  

For counters and tray or sink, I use Clorox Super Cleaner+Bleach  Comes in One gallon pack w/sprayer at Sam’s etc. ( Soap and Clorox in a spray bottle on all my counters and cutting boards after washing) Cleans sterilizes and evaporates well.  Or you can use vinegar and water.  

I use a baster to get (Suck mode) the last of the air out if all I have is Zip-Locks I then constantly wash my hands and any surfaces they may have touched with either soap, vinegar and water or Clorox Clean-up.

Preferably you should thaw poultry in the refrigerator,  the microwave makes rubber chicken, and never leave it on the counter.  Do not bring it down to room temperature, a little colder than room temperature till it hits the hot pan or oil is preferred and it cuts nicer.  Well-cooked poultry is safe.  It is the skin that carries most of the dangerous microbes.  And water and skin in hot oil is not a good idea.

Kitchen Fact: The safe internal temperature for cooked chicken is 165° Fahrenheit (75° Celsius). A meat or instant-read thermometer is your best bet for determining the temperature of your chicken, and if you're cooking a whole bird, it should be inserted into the thickest part of the thigh but not touching bone.

Buffalo Wings, Thighs And Happy Cleaning…
Most Buffalo-style wings are deep fried, 7-9 minutes in restaurant circles in a 350-375 control temperature fryer.  I do not care for the eBay, HSN,  Amazon cheap home deep fryers, I have seen and been witness to a runaway fryer and oil burns.

They are just too dangerous in a non-professional environment with uncontrolled kids in the kitchen. And your kitchen will start to stink and eventually get coated with a light coat of oil.  Happy Cleaning. Restaurants have extensive exhaust system that vent outside your kitchen stove only vents the air horizontal away from the fryer coating your kitchen with a mist of hot oil including the cabinets and walls, the ceiling and so forth  

During the holidays, it’s a good time to teach kids to cook if they are old enough, mature enough, interested and if you can get their attention away from toys and gifts.  Here is a trick I use, I put caution tape up to keep the little ones out.  I do not fry foods in the house, the restaurant is a controlled environment and thats OK, different story. 

If you ever watched Ramsey when he goes into a kitchen, the fryer grills are is usually unsanitary and greased up.  Holidays gatherings are not a good time with extra people and kids running in and out of the kitchen. Besides again and I don’t care for the bullshit by TV shills and pitchmen that their fryers will not stink up your house and leave a nice coat of oil on all the surfaces.

Wings In A Real Meal ( See Photo)
I pan fried some wings in a large iron skillet ( LODGE, the deal of Ironware) to make sure they hit after dredging in egg-wash and flour in olive and canola oil mixed 50/50, then egg-wash again and dip into Doritos Barbecue flavored chips smashed to death in a gallon size Ziplock bag, or your blender, and then the WINGS and THIGHS were shaken together.  

Bigger, game size servings I bake, rather than the pan,  the Doritos (or Lays) have many flavors you can play with and the results usually work out well.  Lay them out on a pan in a 350 degree oven for about Thirty minutes.

Prior to pan frying the chicken,  I had pan-fried or softened celery, onions, green pepper, scallions and a small shredded carrot, then combined the two for final assembly. Actually I cheated I used two pans and cut the time in half.  I then poured over a mixture of melted butter and Franks liquid hot sauce, some with Teriyaki Sauce.

For bigger portions, the Doritos wings worked great in the oven foil trays from GFS [Gordon Food Service]  with the prepped veggies and no muss no fuss and came out ready for ten hungry people. Nothing survived, they ate the whole enchilada.              

Dry Plates Are A Sign Of Success!  I Got Great Reviews!

Wing Sauce Wars

🐔  Frank’s Louisiana Hot Sauce Regular…  I used regular which is hot enough, because the hot is really hot.  Others preferred Crystal.  This is an on-going battle here in the South, Franks and Crystal have been going at it for decades. It’s a cult thing but they do have two distinct flavors.  Eggs in the AM, I like Crystal, Wings I like Franks.

Both of these hot sauces are readily available in most grocery stores and don't be surprised to find fifteen other sauces plus another fifteen other than Buffalo.  Place sauce and melted butter in a deep Tupperware  bowl, add the cooked wings, cover with tight lid and shake well.  I pull them out with tongs or dump them on a strainer with the same bowl size on the bottom and let them drain.

I mix Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing with Franks regular for a lighter combo and they love it.  I also mix it stronger with a little rice vinegar for a sauce used on Sushi Rice called Dynamite sauce.

Lately with age, I now use, endorse, love, damn thats good, give me more, incredible sauces by Sweet Baby Ray.  Literally tossed or used up everything else I have in my pantry for Sweet Baby Ray’s sauces. They came out recently and now have a great assortment of flavors for all kinds of cooking.

Product Development
Wings, an American favorite started as the trash part of the chicken and mainly considered useless.  Culinary entrepreneurs embraced them. The four or five salient popularity points for a restaurant to sell wings are:

They are easy to count, portion and inventory and you can make them a zillion different ways.  Wings can stay frozen and don’t spoil, but most importantly they are very popular.  Their success pushed by the restaurant trade is simple…you follow the money and the garbage wings at 17 cents or less are a money maker at an average of 55-65 cents retail with an overpriced beer.  

The last, being the most important point obviously. Profitable is also involved in training help, with fast no prep work, as they come in bulk, frozen, right to the fryer, dip in a toss bowl and serve. Critical: you must hire help that can count !

To be authentic, and if you just made them conventionally, you'll need to accompany your hot wings with fresh, crisp celery and blue cheese dressing, both of which are said to help ease the heat of the hot wings and thighs. 

I just don’t make it too hot, folks can add all the Aqua Regia or Molten Lava (an actual brand of hot-sauce)  they want, so the rest of us can watch their innards drip onto the floor in the TV show, ER TRAUMA TODAY… 

As you get older (and wiser) you adjust. Too many of the hot dishes today seem to be going ballistic with stupid TV cooks dare-eating shows with hosts that have alimentary canals made of cast iron.  Later in life they will get to meet PBTN, the trifecta, Pepto Bismol, Tums and Nupercainal.  

I do however prefer a liberal amount of Coors, Miller Lite or Shock Top with a slice of orange added to kill the heat pain.  A six-pack for thee is appropriate. 

The leftover sauce, I served it over rice for the veggies content that cooked with the wings. The sauce made a nice combo, I put it in a gravy bowl,  so remember to put out spoons and forks. The plates came back clean except for bones so I know they liked the veggies. 

Note: you can also bake the chicken in a 350-375  degree oven for about a half to 3/4 hour if you are not a pan frier and trying to save your arteries and veins.

Southern Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is probably the first dish one thinks of when asked to name Southern dishes. It ranks right up there with cornbread, greens, and grits.  This is a basic Southern fried chicken recipe, and it is easy and delicious. Serve this crispy fried chicken with mashed potatoes and coleslaw, along with steamed broccoli or another favorite side dish. Use bone-in chicken pieces in this recipe. For boneless chicken breasts or cutlets, take a look at this recipe.


4 pounds chicken pieces

1 1/2 cups milk

2 large eggs

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour  

2 tablespoons salt

2 teaspoons pepper

3 cups vegetable oil

Kosher salt


Preheat the oven to 200 F and place a rack in a large baking pan. ( FOR WARMING SUBSEQUENT BATCHES)
Combine milk and eggs in a bowl; whisk to blend well.
In a large heavy-duty resealable plastic food storage bag, combine the flour, salt, and pepper.
Dip a chicken piece in the milk mixture; let excess drip off into the bowl.
Put a few chicken pieces in the food storage bag and shake lightly to coat thoroughly.
Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining chicken pieces.
Heat oil in a deep, heavy skillet to 350 F.
Fry the chicken, a few pieces at a time, for about 10 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and thoroughly cooked. 
Chicken breasts will take a little less time than other pieces.
Pierce with a fork to see if juices run clear to check for doneness, or use an instant-read thermometer. The minimum safe temperature for chicken is 165 F (74 C).
With a slotted spoon, move to paper towels to drain; sprinkle with salt.
Transfer the drained chicken to the prepared pan with rack. Move the chicken to the oven to keep warm while frying subsequent batches.


  • Replace the milk with evaporated milk or buttermilk.
  • Replace the salt and pepper with a seasoned salt blend.
  • Add about 1/2 cup of fine dry breadcrumbs to the flour mixture.

Eastern Chinese Chicken Wings

Recipe courtesy of Andrew Zimmern of the  Food Network 

Are you tired of Buffalo Wings and need something from the other side of the world.  Here is a great recipe I found that on TV that Chef Andrew Zimmern calls his favorite and the credit is to him.

But DO NOT ALTER the recipe because according to Zimmern, it was developed 500 years ago, and he received the recipe from a friend, authenticated it, and it is delicately balanced.  If you change the ingredients or alter the measurements it will not be the same, he reinforces that point.

MEASURE CAREFULLY AND EXACT.  Use Natural Soy Sauce, not manufactured.  See my notes.  Most Soy Sauces contain a whole bunch of things you don’t want in this recipe, preservatives, colorings as they will surface in the glaze during the reduction and taint the taste.  READ HERE: SOY SAUCE


  • 16 whole chicken wings, flap segments removed and saved for stock or discarded
  • 1/3 cup sake
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce (Natural Soy Sauce, no added ingredients  or they will stick to glaze)
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar (If you like it sweeter, add more. You can check the flavor of the sauce at any time and I encourage you to do so.)
  • 3 tablespoons miring (japans rice wine and water)
  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 4 large thin slices fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves star anise
  • 1 dried hot chile
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Shaved green onions, halved.  I throw some in the pot while cooking down and then more for garnish and with sesame seeds.


Place a 12-14-inch nonstick sauce pan over high heat.  Make sure its big enough. (LODGE)
Add the chicken and dry-sear to lightly brown the chicken
Add the sake, soy sauce, 1/3 cup water, brown sugar, miring  oyster sauce, ginger, star anise, dried red chile, green onions  and cinnamon stick and bring to a simmer
Cook, covered, about 12 minutes.
Uncover and simmer until the pan is almost dry, tossing frequently to coat the wings, 10 to 12 minutes.
Skim off the fat if you like, and serve, garnishing with scallion shavings and sesame seeds.