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This Sunday is Father’s Day. That means backyard grilling. Dads love fire. Dads love wings. Just because you’re making wings doesn’t mean they have to be from Buffalo (not that there’s anything wrong with wings from Buffalo). I wanted to lighten things up a bit. It is summer, after all. Light is the name of the game.

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Citrus Marinated Chicken Wings

  • 2 cups orange juice
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 1 whole head of garlic
  • 1 T black peppercorns
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 3 lbs chicken wings, cut into drumettes

For the marinade: Place garlic and peppercorns in bowl of a mortar and pestle or food processor. Add salt. Crust garlic and peppercorns together or pulse until a paste forms. Combine juices, garlic/peppercorn paste, thyme and pepper flakes in a large bowl. Reserve 1 cup of marinade

For the chicken: Combine marinade with chicken wings. Cover and place in refrigerator 3-4 hours (see notes). After 3-4 hours, remove wings from marinade and let sit at room temp for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat grill to high. While grill is heating, place reserved marinade in a small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until boiling. Continue boiling until reduced by half and slightly thickened. When grill is hot, place wings over heat. Let wings cook 8-10 minutes per side. After wings have been flipped once, baste with reserved marinade. Continue turning every few minutes to avoid burning. They should be done in 18-120 minutes total cooking time. Serve hot.

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Notes:

  • Don’t marinate too long. There is a lot of acid in that marinade. The chicken will become mushy if they marinate more than five or six hours. Four hours is a good amount of time to develop the flavors.
  • I use a gas grill. Grilling times may vary depending on the heat of your grill. Use your own judgement to determine doneness.
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