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Food Review: The Nguyen Sweet Chili Chicken Wings

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Food Review: The Nguyen Sweet Chili Chicken Wings

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Though my family never has a set time for our barbecues, the surprise makes things even better. Coming home to prepare and cook the food with my family has always been one of my favorite things to do. And while we do prepare a variety of foods, ranging from hot dogs to Korean BBQ, there has always been one dish that I look forward to most: our sweet chili chicken wings.

For as long as I can remember, the sweet taste of each bite always came with a slight hint of spice. My mom, who’s the expert on these wings, suggests tat “you grill the skin until it’s on the verge of being crispy.” This way the parts of the chicken that are in contact with the cooking grate will have a nice crunch, but everything else in between stays soft. After you get past that nice shell of chicken skin, you’ll find yourself biting into some soft and juicy meat, which seems to fall off the bone so effortlessly.

With all this talk about my favorite chicken wings you may be wondering, how exactly do we make it? Since this is more of a party dish, we’re gonna need to make a lot. To start, we need to boil about 30 jumbo wings. Once those are done, we are going to marinade them. One of the reasons I love this recipe so much is because it is not defined by exact numbers, so it is open to adjustment based on the cook’s preference. For the marinade, I usually use ½ a bottle of oyster sauce, ½ a bottle of sweet chili sauce, ⅓ of a bottle of sesame oil, 4 teaspoons of soy sauce, a tablespoon of crushed garlic oil, and some salt. After mixing the chicken, I let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Once it’s done, I grill it until it reaches that perfect crispiness.

Now that we’ve finished cooking the wings and they’re ready to be served, let’s figure out who’s going to eat them. Though I could definitely sit down and eat 30 jumbo wings on my own, I’d rather share this delight with others. These Sweet Chili Wings have been a hit amongst many friends and families. Parker Ljung ’18 says that “these wings are some of the best wings I’ve ever eaten! It is such a great twist on a traditional party food.” They often provide people with a unique and memorable taste. The taste is one that can stand on its own and can fit a variety of occasions ranging from barbecues to movie theater snacks.

While these wings do have a unique sweetness and perfect texture, what also makes them so great is the process and commitment involved with making them. Throughout the preparation process, you’re required to keep an eye on them and be very hands on, especially when marinating. And during this time, I always feel that I’m in my own world where it’s just me and the wings. And it isn’t just me. There have been countless times when I’ve gone over to a friend’s house to make these wings and collectively, we’ve disconnected from everything else to make sure these wings are perfect. As Patrick Timlin ’18 says, “we’ve had many barbecues, where we make these wings, that have ended in a combination of dancing and cooking.”

And for as long as I can remember, it has always been that perfect dish. The combination of sweet and spicy flavors matched with the perfected texture of the skin has made eating it a journey in itself. Though I always crave them, I am always surprised by the amazing flavor of these Sweet Chili Chicken Wings and I guarantee you will be too. So, if you ever get the chance to taste them, don’t be a chicken, give them a try.


Chris Nguyen ’18

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Food Review: The Nguyen Sweet Chili Chicken Wings