Using sous vide to cook your chicken wings helps eliminate most of the guess work, always resulting in perfectly cooked chicken. This is very important because no one wants to serve undercooked chicken at a party. The other benefit to having pre-cooked wings is that the frying process is just used to crisp the skin, so it can be done at a hotter temperature, resulting in a crispier wing.
This recipes calls for the wings to be cooked at 65.5°C (150°F) for 2 to 5 hours but anything between 64.4°C to 68.8°C (148°F to 156°F) will result in very tender chicken. For dryer, but even more tender wings you can cook them at 71°C to 76.6°C (160°F to 170°F) for 4 to 12 hours. After the sous vide process is done you can also chill the wings in an ice bath and store them in the refrigerator or freezer if you'd like and then fry them just before the party starts.
For two great dipping sauces to showcase those chicken wings at your next party, try offering both my Bacon-Bourbon BBQ Jam and my Honey-Chipotle BBQ Sauce. The first combines two of my favorite foods, bacon and bourbon, and the second gives a delicate balance between the heat from the chipotles and the sweetness from the honey. Both are sure winners for your party guests.
If you like this recipe you can get it and more than 100 other recipes that will help you create remarkable cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and small plates that will amaze your friends. It's all in my book Modernist Cooking Made Easy: Party Foods - Get Your Copy Today!
Also, if you are just getting started experimenting with molecular gastronomy and modernist cuisine then I highly recommend one of these molecular gastronomy kits. They have everything you need to do many different dishes.
Preheat the water bath to 65.5°C (150°F).
If using whole wings, cut them into drummettes and wing flats, discarding the tips. Salt and pepper the chicken pieces. Seal them in a sous vide bag and place into the water bath. Cook for 2 to 5 hours. Remove from the sous vide pouches, pat dry, and let rest at least an hour.
They can also be stored in the refrigerator or frozen at this point. It is best to deep fry them just before serving.
Heat the oil to 204°C (400°F). Set up a drying station with a metal rack set over a sheet pan.
Add the chicken in batches, being sure not to overcrowd the pan. Cook just until the skin is golden brown and crispy, turning if needed. Remove from the heat and set on the metal rack. Toss with any sauce or coating you are using and serve.