Sunday, April 23, 2017

Product Review: Cave Tools Barbecue Chicken Wing Rack

Chicken wings! Next to ribs, it's one of my favorite snacks things to eat throughout the year. There's something primal and satisfying about holding a piece of cooked meat from its bone and tearing the flesh off. When the craving hits, I'll head over to the meat section at my local grocery store or buy wings at one of those chain restaurants. But for the best experience, nothing beats homemade chicken wings.

I've made chicken wings in all types of methods -- deep fried, oven baked, oven broiled, smoked, and grilled. There's a pro and con to every cooking method, and it really just depends on personal preference and what equipment is available. Personally, I love smoked wings because it's healthier than deep frying and plus I like the smoke flavor from the wood and/or charcoal.

I was intrigued by the Cave Tools Barbecue Wing and Leg Rack because I wanted to smoke chicken wings evenly and thoroughly. Typically when I would smoke/grill wings or drumsticks, I would simply place them directly on the grate -- but it would cook unevenly or be vulnerable to flare-ups when the drippings would fall down into the hot coals.

The unique feature of this rack is that it also includes a drip pan so that it can catch all the drippings during the cooking process. Since the drip pan is placed directly on top of the hot grate, I would suggest lining the inside with aluminum foil so that the drippings wouldn't evaporate so quickly. You could then put vegetables like chopped onions, bell peppers, or mushrooms. I'll definitely use foil on the next cooking session.

On this particular night using the chicken wing rack, I used some drumsticks that were on the small side so it took some trial and error to figure out the best way to hang the chicken upright without falling down. If you have bigger wings or drumsticks, then you could dangle using the bone -- as pictured on the box. After about 10 minutes, the wings/drumsticks turned out great. Cooked evenly throughout, golden brown on the outside yet still tender and juicy on the inside with a subtle smoky flavor.

If you're wondering what flavor wings -- lemon pepper. It is my all-time favorite flavor for chicken wings. Here is my simple recipe using one (or two) lemons:

- Grated lemon zest
- Lemon juice
- Salt & pepper
- Olive oil
- Marinade overnight

Cave Tools Barbecue Wing Rack & Drip Pan
The Dirty Smoke Rating (4/5 stars) - Highly recommended
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Cave Tools website (15% off with code WING15)