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El Ranch-O's Wings of Fire

Serves 6 to 8

1/2 C. olive oil
1 C. Fuego Spice Mix (see below)
5 lbs. chicken drumettes
1 1/2 C. Blazin' BBQ Sauce (see below)
6 sprigs cilantro
2 1/2 C. El Ranch-O Dressing (see below)

To make the wings: Mix the oil and spice mix in a large mixing bowl. Add the chicken wings and toss until each piece is fully coated. Preheat the oven to 350F. Place the wings in a large baking pan and bake for 30 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the meat reads 165 or higher. Cool the wings, then cover and refrigerate until ready to finish preparing and serve.

To grill the wings: Prepare the coals in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill. When the coals are hot, grill the wings until heated through, turning continually as they cook, about four minutes. Transfer the grilled wings to a large mixing bowl, add the BBQ sauce, and toss until the wings are completely coated. Transfer the wings to a serving platter. Garnish with the cilantro and serve with the dressing for dipping.

Blazin' BBQ Sauce:
2 T. olive oil
1/2 C. chopped yellow onion
2 T. minced garlic
1 t. ground cumin
1 T. dark chile powder
1/3 C. malt vinegar
1 C. ketchup
3/4 C. firmly packed dark brown sugar
1/4 C. dark soy sauce
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. chipotle puree (use canned chipotles in adobo sauce, pureed in blender)

To make the sauce: Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, cumin and chile powder, and saute until the onions are soft. Add the malt vinegar and deglaze, stirring and scraping the bottom of the saucepan to loosen all the brown bits adhered to the pan. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer until slightly thickened. Transfer to a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth. Place in an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use or for up to three days.

Makes 2 cups

El Ranch-O Dressing:
1 C. buttermilk
1 T. freshly squeezed lime juice
1 T. minced cilantro
1 t. minced fresh oregano
1 T. finely diced yellow onion
2 t. minced garlic
1/2 t. salt
2 t. black pepper
1 1/2 C. cold mayonnaise

Combine the buttermilk, lime juice, cilantro, oregano, onion, garlic, salt and pepper, whisking until combined. Add the mayonnaise and whisk until smooth. Cover and refrigerate for hour to develop flavors. The dressing will keep for up to one week in an airtight container.

Makes 2 1/2 cups

Fuego Spice Mix:
1/4 C. paprika
2 t. cayenne
2 T. salt
2 t. ground white pepper
2 T. black pepper
2 T. granulated garlic
2 T. chile powder
2 T. oregano

Combine all ingredients, mixing well. Store in an air-tight container, out of direct light, for up to six months.

Makes 1 cup



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