finger food Tag

Book Bait: The Hulk, Dry-fried Green Hot Wings

WHAT:  In a shameless campaign to drum up anticipation for our upcoming cookbook, The Art of Escapism Cooking – A Survival Story, today I am launching a new recipe series with a very self-serving, absolutely no-good intent.  Lady and gentlemen, may I present to you, The Book BaitWhat are book baits you ask.  Well, they are brand new recipes that are not in the cookbook but however, in order to make them, you will need an essential component from the book to complete which, yes, is not yet published until October 15, 2019.  And yes, I am willing to do that to you to sell books.

WHY:  Aside from the main motive to get you to pre-order the book (and you can do it here, here and here!), the inspiration for creating this recipe series – if there is still room for this argument – is not entirely corrupt.  There is a chapter inside the book called Condiments, consisting of sauces and spice-mixtures that are used more than once throughout the book.  But since the wrapping-up of the book, I continued to unearth new and exciting ways to utilize them that are too good to be left unbothered.  Which brings us to today’s subject, Fried Chili Verde Sauce.

HOW:  If I could put this green chili sauce in every recipe in the book, I would.  It’s a smooth, creamy almost, and fiercely fragrant puree made from green cayenne peppers that are cooked down, intensified, consummated.  It packs such a pronounced profile of that savory, mouthwatering pepperiness that so many other chili sauces strive for but fall miserably short on, with just enough heat to break a mist of sweat on your forehead without burning your hair off.  It sparkles as a supporting role in a small dollop but ultimately, can and should carry a dish as the main storyteller in a recipe such as this.

I call it, The Hulk, semi-butterflied dry-fried wings lathered in a fiery green hot puree with fried chili verde sauce as the base, and several varieties of green herbs to bring a grassy, fragrant, complex flavor profile to the overall, painfully pleasurable experience.  The butter that is traditionally mixed into other hot wing recipes, is replaced by my extra-brown browned butter that is poured on ruthlessly at the end, humming its respective tune in this crispy, spicy, creamy and finger-licking chorus.

You probably want this immediately.  I mean I certainly want it again since yesterday.  But if someone is making you wait five weeks… well, that’s just mean.


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    Right, let’s face it. Who are we kidding? The only thing sporty about me is that I could, maybe, jump over a puddle if my life depends on it. But that doesn’t mean you wouldn’t want someone like me at the party this Sunday – while the gang rouse up above a borderline-patriotic roar towards the flatscreen, beers blazing and testosterone bursting – who sinks into the couch giggling at her phone whilst watching French bulldog puppies on youtube. Why, because my friends, I’m the one who’s gonna bring the kool-Aid. It doesn’t even matter if you don’t like sports, nearly everyone watches the Super Bowl. It’s such a huge sporting event, and many people often host their own viewing parties, which is what I’m attending. I don’t have a favorite team or anything, but it’s still fun to go to these Super Bowl parties. Some of my friends take this sporting event extremely seriously though. They usually use sports betting Indiana apps to place their bets on which team they think is most likely to win. By doing this, they could win some money. So many people place bets on these big events, so it’s important to bet whilst the odds are still good. Whilst some of us will be betting, others will just be watching the game and having fun at the party. That’s what I’ll be doing, and I’ll be bringing some food.

    So let’s hit it. For God and country, in the name of sports, and beefcakes clashing and tight muscles fluttering in slow motion… let’s eat ourselves to a cellulite-d immobile pulp and call it the spirit. Man… gotta love this day.

    Here’s the game-plan.

    First, what’s a football party without some sliders? These 2:1 sliders with charred green chili mayo, with patties that are 2 parts meat and 1 part cheese, browning and melting all over the place, is the one that you’re looking for.

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    Can I rudely leave you alone with this crunchy… buttery… porky, gingery shrimpy thingy today even though you were just introduced?  Not that you’ll need any persuasions to take them home to your bed, but you know, I still feel like explaining myself why I’m in such a hast today.  Well, first, It’s been the third consecutive “blue sky day” here in Beijing which is as rare as a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade through The Black Gate of Mordor, so yes first, I think I should step outside my nest.  Secondly, yesterday as I was routinely sipping my afternoon joe while courting my laptop, through the misty reflection of the screen I saw there he was… Rebeus Hagrid, in his bad hair-day.  So yes secondly, I think I should step outside my nest.  Thirdly, there’s a fabulous red skirt from Zara with my hip’s name on it.


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    Oh mah God… I haven’t been under so much pressure, yes, since the time when I realized I needed six more credits to graduate college (SIX!  “Professor, your otherwise gross beard appears unexpectedly dashing today”… just kidding)… and it is precisely the reason why, as much as I may seem to be an ideal candidate to host a dinner party, I shouldn’t be allowed to.  At all.  Because my management skills crumble in disarray when I’m cooking more than one thing.  There’s a large number of oysters that I’m pulling all strings to keep alive inside a fridge that lacks everything else to cook them with, and a whole scale-on, bone-in, head-attached sea bass that frankly… I don’t remember inviting to dinner.  On top of which, a 7 pounds limp-neck goose-beast is going to be dropped onto my doorstep like surprise! any minute now… could be like now!  Plus did I mention I’m supposed to make a tart?  That’s it, time for emotional breakdown.

    Hey, nobody said my threshold for stress isn’t delicate at best.

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    Yesterday, I spent a good deal of effort in the kitchen, not just on the usual manual labor I do driven by unknown impulses, but on trying to draw the very blurred line on practicality/doability when it comes to home-cooking, which I have slowly come to realize to having a very different definition than the general public.  Well, I suspect not having a day-job has something to do with it, but really though, what do people consider worth-the-effort when the grunt work is to be done by their own hands in their own kitchen?

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