Wednesday Gourmet: Mission Chinese Food’s Chicken Wings

We went to Mission Chinese Food on the Lower East Side last night and it was worth the 2:15 hours that we waited for a table. They took over an old Vietnamese take out place, so it still looks like an Chinese take out place but after you venture downstairs, pass the free keg beer and kitchen (there’s a window so you can see the chefs) you end up in a little 45-seat dining room with red & orange, dim lighting and a fun communal table feel.

All of the food was delicious and we ordered the spiciest things on the menu, including Thrice Cooked Bacon, Mapo Tofu and Chongqing Chicken Wings.  The spice on the wings were delicious and after doing a little bit of sleuthing, I found the recipe.

Chongqing Chicken Wings with Explosive Chili Pepper

Image from

Total Time: 4 hrs 30 min
Prep 15 min | Cook 15 min
Yield: 4 servings


  • Oil, for frying
  • 3 pounds mid-joint all-natural, organic chicken wings
  • Kosher salt
  • Spice kit, recipe follows
  • 12 ounces dried Tianjin chiles*
  • 4 fresh jalapeno peppers, diced
  • Fresh cilantro, leaves picked and chopped for serving
  • Fresh ginger, peeled and minced, for serving
  • *Can be found at specialty Asian markets

  • 1/4 cup whole cumin
  • 1 cup dried chile flakes
  • 10 star anise pods
  • 1/4 cup Szechuan peppercorn

Cooking Directions

  1. In deep fryer or large, heavy-bottomed pot, heat oil to 300 degrees F.
  2. Working in small batches, fry the chicken wings for 5 minutes. Toss wings together in large mixing bowl with generous amounts of salt. Spread into single layer on a baking sheet and freeze.
  3. Heat oil to 350 degrees F. Working in small batches, fry frozen wings for 5 minutes. Cook’s Note: Fry times may vary.
  4. Let wings drain for 1 minute for crispy skin. Toss the hot wings together in a large mixing bowl with desired amount of spice mix.
  5. Heat pan or wok and toast Tianjin chiles and jalapenos until fragrant. Cover wings with blanket of peppers to perfume the wings. Sprinkle with cilantro and ginger, as desired.


    Spice Kit:  Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Toast the cumin, chile flakes, anise, and peppercorn on baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Grind the spices in coffee grinder and reserve.


2 responses to “Wednesday Gourmet: Mission Chinese Food’s Chicken Wings

  1. sounds yummy! glad it was worth the wait. just read about MCF in bon appetit!

  2. I recently ate at Mission Chinese and began searching high and low for the Chicken WIng Recipe. I’m sorry to tell you the one you posted above, is not it. However I’m *glad* to tell you I have a link to the recipe, provided by Danny B. himself. It was just published in September 2013:

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