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05 June 2007 @ 09:09 am
way more than anyone wants to know about me and buffalo wings  
According to legend, Buffalo Wings originated at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, New York in the mid-60s. (People actually from Buffalo sometimes get hilariously bent out of shape when outsiders refer to the wings by their famous name.) Traditionally, they are deep fried, unbreaded and then coated in a mixture of hot sauce and butter.

I enjoy that style on occasion, but when I crave buffalo wings, it's not what I want. What I want is Cluck-U wings (or "wingers" as they sometimes called them). Cluck-U started in New Brunswick, New Jersey in the mid-80s and went onto become a minor chain in Jersey and Maryland college towns. When I went off to college in New Brunswick in '87, I had never even heard of buffalo wings and I had never drank more than one beer in a night. Some of the upperclassmen in my dorm decided to remedy that one night, ordering up a huge mess of Cluck-U "Thermo Nuclear" wings and insisting (as an absolute rule) that my roommates and I drink no water with them, only beer (probably Old Milwaukee). I devoured those wings with what one of my friends later refered to as a "caveman" intensity. And with every delicious, insanely hot bite, I needed more and more beer. And the drunker I got, the more talkative I got. Even around people I barely knew. That was the night I went from a shy, timid introvert to loud-mouthed, gregarious extrovert. As ludicrous as it sounds, that baptism by hot sauce and cheap beer had a real, lasting effect on my personality.

But enough mythology, what about the wings themselves? Cluck-U made them sweet. They were battered in what I remember as something like a light tempura (all the better to soak up the sauce) and then deep fried and tossed in what was really more of a glaze than a sauce. It was probably a mix of hot sauce, brown sugar, corn syrup and vinegar. At least that's the combo I was experimenting with Saturday night when I tried (for the first time ever) to recreate them. They were definitely great and fairly close to the mark, but way sweeter than hot. Next time, I'll add some chili powder to increase the heat. I'm also curious about adding just a little tomato puree to the mix, although, once I do that I'm moving away from the Cluck-U recipe and into new territory.

 
 
Listening to: Mountain Goats - "Mole"
 
 
 
Porcupunk: Rutgersvyk13 on June 5th, 2007 02:19 pm (UTC)
Oh, that was mean!!
Now I want Cluck-U's and at 4am no less!!! :))

How high up the "hotness/spicyness scale" did you go?
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: green grassassmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 02:24 pm (UTC)
Sorry to share the madness!

At our peak, my friend Joel and I could polish off 96 Global Thermo Nuclear wings in a night. But then they kind of ruined the Global wings by covering them in so much black pepper that you couldn't taste the sauce. After that I switched down to the just the Thermo Nukes, which were still plenty hot.

How bout you?
- vyk13 on June 5th, 2007 02:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
- assmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 02:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
- vyk13 on June 5th, 2007 03:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
I remember those days my friend - joelsd on June 7th, 2007 12:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: I remember those days my friend - assmonkeydiary on June 7th, 2007 02:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
theballadofyoko on June 5th, 2007 02:23 pm (UTC)
Cluck-U! There was one in Trenton, where an ex-boyfriend's old house used to be.
Diary of an Ass Monkeyassmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 02:29 pm (UTC)
Hey, that's not so far from here! There used to be one near Princeton that I could hit if I didn't mind a little drive.
- vyk13 on June 5th, 2007 02:32 pm (UTC) (Expand)
You kind of imagined it - joelsd on June 7th, 2007 12:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
Re: You kind of imagined it - assmonkeydiary on June 7th, 2007 02:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
I am that rough man standing ready in the nightwarpedpuppy on June 5th, 2007 02:41 pm (UTC)
go get a mortar and pestle and grind up some thai peppers and soak them in oil for a couple weeks (be sure to mix) and then use the oil to augment your need for the burn.

also makes a good practical joke - put oil in hated person's "personal lubricant."
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: aqua chairassmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 02:48 pm (UTC)
Oh my... let's stay friends, shall we?

One time, my roommate Stephen and I went to this outdoor market and bought every type of hot pepper we could find, both fresh and dried, then soaked them in a little oil and put the results in a blender. The resulting concoction could instantly render huge quanitities of almost any food instantly inedible by all but the bravest of eaters.
- warpedpuppy on June 5th, 2007 02:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
zantimisfit on June 5th, 2007 03:00 pm (UTC)
Photo
For a minute I thought the girl in the picture was kissing an otter. Otters are cute.
Diary of an Ass Monkey: comics: batmanassmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 03:04 pm (UTC)
Re: Photo
Cute, sure, but do you want one in your bed, messing up your nice clean sheets?
Re: Photo - (Anonymous) on June 5th, 2007 03:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
a foxy vixen, so illustriousgloriamunty on June 5th, 2007 06:18 pm (UTC)
You're not supposed to call them buffalo wings? What are you supposed to call them?
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: purple paisleyassmonkeydiary on June 5th, 2007 06:22 pm (UTC)
Just "wings" apparently. It's part of their lore that before the mid-60s nobody used to eat chicken wings, that they'd just use them to flavor soup, so this was the only way one would eat wings. I find that part a bit hard to believe though.
(Deleted comment)
- assmonkeydiary on June 6th, 2007 06:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Pallaspallasathene8 on June 5th, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC)
I feel culturally deprived. The best wings I've had were from Applebees. :P
Diary of an Ass Monkey: amd: angel and the apeassmonkeydiary on June 6th, 2007 06:57 pm (UTC)


They look real good in that photo. I might have to try them...
micah: bratslaerm on June 5th, 2007 09:50 pm (UTC)
you made up for barely getting an ass into that pic with an excellent food memory. kudos! (please, no food memories of kudos.) for some reason, i am pretty utterly transfixed by a good food memory.
d_eggman69d_eggman69 on June 5th, 2007 10:54 pm (UTC)
Kudos, do they still make those? Taking all the hippie goodness of granola and drenching it in chocolate. The only way you can eat that crap. Try a thimble full of habanero/scotch-bonnet if you wanna kick up the heat(BAM!). Should be good for about a 100 wings and blistered taste-buds.
- assmonkeydiary on June 6th, 2007 02:53 am (UTC) (Expand)
- assmonkeydiary on June 6th, 2007 02:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Diary of an Ass Monkey: comics: evil monkey grinassmonkeydiary on June 6th, 2007 06:58 pm (UTC)
And I didn't even mention the blue cheese dipping sauce!
mother of the angry mobpennyland on June 7th, 2007 12:01 am (UTC)
I still swear the green chili/somefuckinhotthing/thai? wing-things we made one year are THE hottest thing ever. We soaked them in thai chili oil, then rolled them in crushed red-pepper flakedd flour stuff and then deep-fried twice to make them crispy. Then soaked them in matouk's sauce in the hot, HOT oven for a bit.

'Spicey!!!'would be a nice way to put them, but they were lip burning and told you what you'd eaten by the 'gastronomical sorrow of the spicey eater' the next morning.

But they were SOOOO FUCKING GOOD
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I still swear the green chili/somefuckinhotthing/thai? wing-things we made one year are THE hottest thing ever. We soaked them in thai chili oil, then rolled them in crushed red-pepper flakedd flour stuff and then deep-fried twice to make them crispy. Then soaked them in matouk's sauce in the hot, HOT oven for a bit.

'Spicey!!!'would be a nice way to put them, but they were lip burning and told you what you'd eaten by the 'gastronomical sorrow of the spicey eater' the next morning.

But they were SOOOO FUCKING <b>GOOD<r/b>
mother of the angry mobpennyland on June 7th, 2007 12:07 am (UTC)
Sorry Grids.

I swear, if this thing wasn't my last line to internets life I'd throw the p.o.s. out the damn window.

The keyboard's about a minute behind anything and I can't spell for shit. But you know that ;P
- assmonkeydiary on June 7th, 2007 12:34 am (UTC) (Expand)
- assmonkeydiary on June 7th, 2007 12:36 am (UTC) (Expand)