Sweet + Sour Crispy Chicken Wings Recipe

Since you cut out inflammatory foods, do you miss the sticky, crunchy, yummy mess of hot wings? Because I did... until now! I always liked a terryaki style, sweet with heat kind-of wing. So, I've created one that covers those flavors. It is sweet yet has a lot of depth in a briney, salty, sour kind-of way. However, this is autoimmune paleo friendly, so it's free of nightshades, dairy, sugar and soy! Now, the key to a great wing, is sourcing a great bird. I buy local when possible, and lately I've been able to get Step 5 (Animal Welfare Rating) Colorado chickens at my local Whole Foods Market. They are at the end of the harvest, so the wings are big and really meaty and nice. Be sure that when you have the opportunity to choose clean meats, you do so! Eating a humanely raised animal not only increases the nutritional value, but encourages more farmers to use good practices.  Plus, you get extra karma points.

Truly, choosing clean animal products is one of the key factors to healing autoimmune conditions. It allows you to detoxify, to reduce inflammation and to build gut health.

If you can, find a farm nearby, or source a clean bird from a heath conscious store. There are plenty of places that offer frozen birds, which are a fine choice. And, you can even order frozen, clean meats from some online retailers. The best step is to engage in conversation with your butcher, find out where their birds come from, what they eat and if they get to move around. If your butcher doesn't know, it's probably not the place you want to be.

Top tips for picking out a clean bird include:

  • Look for bigger, or more elongated legs (this means the bird has been walking)
  • Look for smaller, leaner breasts (bigger, tender breasts means they've been laying unnaturally)
  • Look for thick skin with a few feathers still visible and more yellowed fat (this is healthy skin and indicates more of a natural diet)
  • Ask if they have been able to walk, to eat grasses and bugs, or just grain (first choice is a natural environment with natural movement)
  • Read labels, if you cannot ask: Pastured is best (this indicates they have walked and lived in a natural environment)Organic means that they have been fed an organic diet (but may include corn and soy)Natural and Hormone Free means nothing (natural is a buzz word and hormones have been illegal in poultry for 50+ years).

Now that we've got a great bird, let's spice it up!

SWEET + SOUR CRISPY CHICKEN WINGS

By: Brandi Mackenzie | Serves 2-4

Ingredients

Wings 2 pounds Chicken Wings 2 tablespoons Expeller Pressed Coconut Oil (flavorless), softened Sauce 1/4 cup Maple Syrup 3 tablespoons Coconut Aminos 2 teaspoons Ume Plum Vinegar 2 teaspoons Hudson's Bay spice blend * 1 teaspoon Sugar Free Fish Sauce 2-3 cloves minced garlic, optional 1/4 cup+ XCT Oil or Expeller Pressed Coconut Oil, melted

Method 1. Pre-heat oven to 450F degrees. 2. Cut wings to separate between forearm and upper arm, leaving tip in tact. Toss in coconut oil and place on parchment lined sheet pan. Cook until crispy, 45-60 minutes. 3. Combine all sauce ingredients, except oil, into a large bowl. Whisk in oil. 4. Transfer sauce to a small sauce pan and bring to a simmer at medium-low heat. Cook for 20 minutes, until reduced to a molasses-thick sauce. 5. Remove from pan and place back in to large bowl. 6. Once wings are crispy, remove from oven. Toss in large bowl, with sauce, while still warm. 7. Serve immediately over greens and eat with your fingers. Enjoy!

*If you avoid seed spices on AIP, you may substitute this blend with a pinch (appx 1/8 teaspoon) of each: garlic powder, onion powder, dried rosemary and dried thyme