Beer Hot Wings With Hoppy Peach Hot Sauce and Beer Blue Cheese Dip
Do you like hot wings? Do you like beer? Then this is the perfect dish for you, because it uses beer in every element of the ultimate beer snack platter. The wings are brined and work well with most beers, although they will pick up some bitterness if you use Pale Ale or IPA, but I enjoy that.
For the Beer Hot Wings:
- 1 bottle of Pale Ale or IPA
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3 tablespoons salt
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon dried chili flakes
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 12 black peppercorns
- 2 1/4 pounds (1 kilogram) chicken wings
To cook: salt, black pepper, chilli powder or flakes, onion powder, and garlic powder
For the hot sauce:
Makes 4 x 15 fuid ounce (450 milliliters) jars
- 6-8 peaches, stoned and halved
- 4-10 habanero chili peppers (adjust to suit your love of heat), chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4 whole garlic cloves
- 1 rosemary sprig
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- Zest and juice of 1 orange
- Scant 1 cup (230 milliliters) cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup (125 milliliters) pale ale or IPA
For the Blue Cheese Dip:
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) cream cheese
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) full fat natural yogurt
- 3 1/2oz (100 grams) blue cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 cup (50 milliliters) milk or oatmeal stout
To make the Beer Hot Wings:
1. Begin a day in advance. To make the beer brine, mix the bottle of beer with an equal amount of cold water. Add the sugar and salt, and stir until combined. Add the garlic, chili flakes, paprika, and peppercorns. Put the chicken wings in a sealable plastic container with a lid and pour over the brine. Place in the refrigerator for 12–24 hours.
2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees — I like to bake my hot wings. Remove the chicken wings from the brine and pat them dry with some paper towel. Place in a bowl and add more seasoning, including pinches of chili powder or flakes, onion powder, and garlic powder. Place the wings on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 35 minutes, or until crisp and golden on the outside and cooked in the middle. Set to one side.
To make the Hoppy Peach Hot Sauce:
1. This can be made days or weeks in advance, with the flavor improving over time. To begin, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the peaches, chili peppers, onion, garlic, and sprig of rosemary on a baking tray, drizzle with the olive oil, and cook in the oven for 20 minutes.
2. Remove the sprig of rosemary and transfer the peaches to a saucepan. Add the remaining ingredients, apart from the beer, season with salt, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Pour in the beer and then blitz everything in a food-blender until you have a thick sauce. Taste the sauce to see if it’s hot enough — you can always add more raw chili peppers at this stage and continue blending. Transfer to sterilized jars.
To make the Beer Blue Cheese Dip:
1. In a blender, combine all the ingredients and pulse until it creates a thick sauce.
Eat it with…
I like smooth dark beers like milk stouts, as they love spice and keep everything cool and under control. Left Hand Nitro Milk Stout is a favorite of mine; Summer Wine Mokko Milk Stout and Nail Brewing Oatmeal Stout are also superb.
Abbot’s Apple Pie
This pie with custard was inspired by a Belgian road trip on which I visited all the Trappist breweries. At Achel they have a large cooler of cakes and pies that we ate with their Dubbel, while at Orval I ate an apple baked in spices and dried fruit. Pulling those influences together, I put them in a pie, where I use a Belgian Quadrupel (sometimes called Abt and named after the monastery’s Abbot). The beer’s richness of dried fruit and spice works perfectly in this triple-hit of beer cooking, all possible using just one bottle of Quad.
For the Quadrupel Apple Pie Filling:
- 2 tablespoons (25 grams) butter
- 4 large cooking apples, peeled, cored, and cut into large cubes
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) soft brown sugar
- Pinch each of ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg
- 4 tablespoons Quadrupel
For the Quadrupel Pie (Shortcrust) Pastry:
- Scant 2 1/2 cups (300 grams) all-purpose (plain) flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
- 1 1/4 sticks (150 grams) butter (at room temperature), plus extra for greasing
- 2-4 tablespoons very cold Quadrupel
- 1 beaten egg to glaze
- Demerara sugar, for sprinkling over finished pie
For the Quadrupel Custard:
- 4 tablespoons Quadrupel
- 1 2/3 cup (400 milliliters) whole milk
- 1/3 cup (100 milliliters) single cream
- 1 vanilla bean (pod), split in half and seeds scraped out
- 6 egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons superfine (caster) sugar
1. To make the pie filling, melt the butter in a large pan and add the apple, sugar, spices, and beer. Stir well, put the lid on the pan, and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. (If you wish, you can make the pie filling and pastry a day in advance).
2. When you’re ready to bake the pie, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 8 inch pie dish with some butter.
3. Roll out the pastry until it is about 1/4 inch thick and cut in half. Line the pie dish with one half of the pastry. Pour in the pie filling and then gently lay the other half of pastry on top. Trim and then fork or crimp the edges of the pie. Cut a small cross in the top of the pie, glaze with the beaten egg, and sprinkle with Demerara sugar. Bake in the oven for 40–45 minutes or until golden.
4. To make the custard, pour the beer into a mug and allow it to go flat (swirling the mug around will help with this).
5. Heat the milk and cream into a saucepan over a low heat. Add the vanilla bean (pod) and bring to a gentle simmer.
6. Beat the egg yolks and sugar in a large heatproof bowl.
7. Remove the vanilla bean (pod) from the pan and then pour the milk and cream into the egg and sugar mix, stirring constantly with a large whisk.
8. Place a clean saucepan on the stovetop over a very low heat and then pour in the custard, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon. Once the custard has thickened, add the beer and stir to combine. Serve the pie with the custard.
Eat it with…
Make sure you have an extra bottle of the beer that you used to go with this one, as that’s obviously the best match. The best version I’ve had is made with Rochefort 10.
Find more recipes in Mark Dredge’s cookbook, “Cooking With Beer,” published by Dog ‘n’ Bone Books, an imprint of Ryland Peters & Small Ltd.