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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sweet & Sour Chicken Wings

You just can't beat the old, tried and true family recipes handed down through the generations. When we were first married my cooking skills were limited, something I worked hard to remedy since my husband loves to eat. My Mom was a great cook with all her recipes stored safely in her head! I watched, learned and took notes. My MIL shared several recipes of their family favourites as well. More often than not these were not actual recipes but more verbal add this, this and this. They weren't written down so I would be frantically writing as she told me how to make the dish and what ingredients to use. I'd watch her make the meal to see her methods. Sweet & Sour chicken wings was one of those recipes. Over the years this has remained one of our family favourites as well.

Sweet & Sour Chicken Wings

I don't think I've seen Sweet & Sour chicken wings done this way anywhere else. The wings are not coated and they are not crispy as most wings are in restaurants. The meat is extremely tender and juicy. The sauce is thinner than a Chinese sweet & sour sauce. There is no pineapple chunks or juice yet the sauce is nicely flavoured.

This recipe was one of the first ones I got from my MIL. There were no actual measurements. It didn't take me long to figure our the portions through a bit of trial and error. We like the sauce as is without thickening beyond the reducing stage but you can thicken with a corn starch slurry if desired. I often use frozen chicken wings for this dish.

Sweet & Sour Chicken Wings

5 lb chicken wings
5 c water
3 c ketchup
¾ c white vinegar
¾ c packed brown sugar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp prepared yellow mustard
1 finely chopped onion

Place the chicken wings in a roasting pan. Pour the water over them. Cover and bake at 275ºF for about 1½ hours if the wings were frozen, 1 hour if the wings are fresh. Pour most of the liquid off the wings reserving it for making stock later. [Cool reserve liquid, freeze until ready to make stock.] Mix the remaining ingredients together. Pour over the wings. Stir the wings to coat. Cover and return to the oven at 300ºF for 1 hour. Raise temperature to 350ºF. Remove lid. Allow the wings to continue cooking until the sauce is reduced to desired consistency.


As you can tell from my husband's plate, he loves sweet & sour chicken wings cooked this way! I always served the wings with rice. I use a large slotted spoon to carefully remove the wings. They are rather delicate because the meat is so tender it falls from the bone easily.

This time I served the sweet & sour wings with Arborio rice cooked in chicken stock and butter using a rice cooker. The sweet & sour sauce flavours the chicken wings through to the bone and gosh are they ever good! It clings to the wings as well. We like ladling some of the sauce over the rice. Served with a garden salad the wings make a lovely, low prep meal.

3 food lovers commented:

LindaG said...

I will definitely be trying this recipe! Especially since it doesn't use pineapple. Most recipes do and my hubby doesn't like pineapple..

Do you think it would work in the crock pot too?

I have been using that roast and then grill to finish rib recipe of yours. I thought about trying the other part of your recipe, just doing them on the grill, but hubby told me not to mess with a good thing. ;)

Garden Gnome said...

Hi Linda :) I can understand the pineapple issue as my husband doesn't like it either. The recipe will work in a crock pot but won't thicken as much as the roaster unless you keep the lid open a bit.

I'm so glad you and your husband are enjoying the roast :) It sounds like your hubby has found a favourite!

LindaG said...

Yes we have. Thank you for that! :)