Suzi's Blog

Braised Chicken Wings with Red Wine and Mushroom Sauce




The great American sports event, the Super Bowl, is just two weeks away. And this Sunday, there are two games to decide who shows up in that Super Bowl.

So, millions of you will be there on Sunday, watching, drinking and eating. Why don’t we all do this in a dignified way? I know, you want finger food that is hot, gooey, and delicious. Okay, how about an upscale wings recipe. Very upscale.

That picture of mushrooms, wonderful mushrooms, is there for a purpose. Most wings are dripping in red chili goop. These wings are served with elegance thanks to a red wine and mushroom sauce. You might even forgo the paper towels and use real napkins.

Don’t worry, that wine and mushroom sauce has been reduced down until the wings are finger-licking sticky. And, tradition holds. One of the ingredients here is red pepper flakes, so there is still some heat, and of course you can adjust that level

Best of all, you can make these wings a day ahead, then reheat before either game. The sauce is supposed to reduce dramatically so that the wings are literally glazed in delicious flavor.

Oh, as for mushrooms, just wait until the Ravens destroy the Patriots [sorry, I am a very embarrassed New York Jets fan].


Braised Wings with Red Wine and Mushroom Sauce

Yield: serves 4 as an entrée or 6-12 as an appetizer


  • 24 chicken wings
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 small yellow onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups chopped brown button mushrooms
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 4 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or oregano leaves
  • 2 teaspoons crush red chile flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Cut off the wing tips and save them for making stock.

Cut the wings in half though the joint. Place a deep 12-inch pan over medium-low heat. Add the butter and the onions. Cook until the onions brown, about 12 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms to the pan. Cook until the mushrooms wilt, about 6 minutes

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine all the remaining ingredients [except the wings!]. Pour into the pan and bring to a low boil. Now, add the wings. Bring the liquid to a low boil, cover, turn the heat to low, and simmer until the chicken wings become very tender, about 30 minutes. Stir occasionally. This can be done 24 hours prior to serving.

To serve, bring the wings and sauce to a low oil. Cook until nearly all the sauce evaporates and forms a glaze around the wings. Serve. Can be reheated and served the next day.


Source: The Great Wings Book by Hugh Carpenter and Teri Sandison



Mexican Wings with Jalapeno Glaze

I like wings. No, I love wings. There is a place close by to us in Manhattan, Walkers, that is a classic New York pub. It opened the year we moved to Tribeca. Great wings with fire and crispness, regrettably available only at dinner time. We’ve been complaining about that for 25 years. You can see how much pull Suzen and I have at Walkers.

So, both for lunch and for other dinners and when we are upstate, we need our own wing recipes. I’ve found a great new resource. In fact, it is called The Great Wings Book by Hugh Carpenter and Teri Sandison. I found it at the bargain table of my Barnes and Noble and I am lucky to have snagged a copy of this 4-year-old book.

We adore this particular recipe for its Jalapeno intensity. And because these wings are baked, not fried. Hot and healthy? What more can you ask for?

Of course, as with any wing recipe, you can mix and match: wings and thighs. The proportions for the sauce are for 24 wings. You can “wing it” to make more sauce as you increase the amount of chicken parts.

The flavor here has an added kick from both Jalapeno jam and minced Jalapeno chilies with seeds. Those seeds have heat, so proceed with care. That’s “culinary code” for doing the mincing job with rubber gloves on and making sure no fingertip is near an eye. You’ll really feel silly if you have to walk around with a teary eye swollen shut because of a dab of chile. I did.

Jalapeno jam was once a rarity, but has become abundant on grocery store shelves. Actually, any pepper jam or jelly can be considered here. With the variety of these jams available, there is also a gigantic flavor spectrum for you to consider. Some jams are hot, some truly too mild, and many are sickly sweet — intended for cream cheese and crackers. The orange juice in this recipe supplies enough sweetness for even me, so try to find one of those jams that delivers at least some modest fire.

Please see my post earlier this week for Agave Margaritas. It’s a natural, and powerfully compelling, accompaniment for these wonder wings.

Mexican Wings with Jalapeno Glaze

Yield: serves 4 as an entrée or 6 to 12 as an appetizer


  • 24 chicken wings [whole wings not just the meatier end]
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups Jalapeno jam
  • 2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 Jalapeno chilies, mince, including the seed
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro sprigs


Cut off the wing tips and save them for making stock.

In a small saucepan, combine all the remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer, stirring to combine. Let cool to room temperature. In a bowl large enough to hold the wings, combine the wings and the jam mixture. Marinate the wings in the refrigerator for 1 to 24 hours — the longer the better.

Preheat the oven to 375⁰F. Line a shallow baking pan with foil. Coat a wire rack with nonstick cooking spray and place the rack in the baking pan. Drain the chicken and reserve the marinade.

Arrange the wings on the racks, s(smooth surface down) and roast 30 minutes. Drain the accumulated liquid from the pan. Baste the wings with the reserved marinade, turn them over, and baste again. Roast until the wings a turn a mahogany color, about another 30 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Cut the wings in half through the joint. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Source: The Great Wings Book by Hugh Carpenter and Teri Sandison