Gochujang is a spicy paste used in Korean cooking, made from red chilli peppers, fermented soya beans, rice, and salt. The flavour profile is like nothing you’ve had before . . . but trust me . . . it can take wings to a whole new level.
I’ve been experimenting with this recipe for some time now and it’s finally in a place where I’m happy with it.
. . . let’s do this!
Firstly separate your wings into drums and flats . . . this won’t effect the flavour, but the end results will look a LOT better if you spend a minute or two on this.
Next we need to make up a 5-4-3-2-1 rub mix with a slight Asian flavour profile to compliment the Gochujang sauce.
Depending on how much you’d like to make you can vary the actual measurements as you see fit, just ensure the ratio is followed.
Today I went for:
- 5 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- 4 Tablespoons sea salt
- 3 Tablespoons ground black pepper
- 2 Tablespoons Chinese five spice powder
- 1 Tablespoon onion powder
Once combined I apply this rub all over the wings leaving them with a nice even coating.
Next I sprinkle the wings with cornflour and leave, on a wire rack, in the fridge for a couple of hours before I cook.
I cook my wings, 100% indirect, at a temperature of around 180°C – 200°C and take them way past the safe internal temperature of 75°C . . . in fact . . . I often take mine to around 90°C. Why? Well I really like my wings with a crisp skin and the meat to completely come off the bone with a single bite . . . personal preference and all that . . . but it’s what I like!
The Gochujang Sauce
Once the wings are cooked we need to toss them in a Gochujang sauce.
In it’s basic form, Gochujang is a fairly thick paste that you definitely would struggle coating your wings in. For this reason we need to loosen it a little and rather than just add some water I like to add a few extra ingredients that compliment the flavour and add a little sweetness.
Here is what I use to make the sauce:
- 175ml cold water
- 1/2 can Sprite
- 75g granulated sugar
- 50g dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 225g Gochujang
- 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
Firstly add the water, Sprite, sugars and soy sauce to a saucepan and bring to the boil over a high heat. Keep stirring until the sugars are dissolved and then add in the remaining ingredients. Keep on a low simmer until you are happy with the thickness.
Now, some just want to enjoy their wings and not worry about presentation etc . . . and if that’s you, well, you can skip this stage and just crack on eating the awesome wings you’ve just cooked, however, the following little touches will add to the overall look and give the taste / texture a little extra magic.
Once you’ve plated the wings first I’d pour over a little extra sauce and then sprinkle over some white and black sesame seeds. Next drizzle over a little ‘Spicy Gochujang mayo which adds a little depth to the flavour and the contrasting colour really helps things pop.
Note: I make my own Gochujang mayo by simply combining mayonnaise with Gochujang and adding a little lemon juice to loosen it up a little. In terms of ratio, I’d go for roughly 2 tablespoons mayonnaise to 1/2 teaspoon of Gochujang.
Finally let’s add some curled spring onions on top.
- Cut the spring onions into sections and slice them lengthwise . . . very thinly
- Place in a bowl of iced water and mix things around to make sure they are all submerged
- After 5 minutes the strips will curl up nicely
- Remove from the water and dry with paper towel