February 25, 2011

Gardein Classic Style Buffalo Wings

Third and final week of the fake meat chicken wing extravaganza! To finish us up, we've got Gardein Classic Style Buffalo Wings. These were the most wing-like of all the items we tested out. I was warned in a couple places on the bag that the sauce is very spicy, so instead of following the directions that said to cover the wings with the sauce before baking, I baked them plain. This was a very good idea. The sauce was VERY spicy! And, I'm told, not very tasty. It was compared to straight Tabasco sauce.

The directions said to bake these (with the sauce) until crisp, but I'm not sure that was going to happen. Perhaps the sauce makes them crisp up, which would be the only sauce in the entire world that would do that, but alone in the oven, these were not going to get crispy. They were too moist to get crispy. In fact, they exuded a pretty fair amount of liquid onto the tray while they were baking. Maybe if I'd let this continue, there would be some crisping, but then the rest of the wing would be terribly dry, so I made a judgement call and pulled them out.

I did not try them with the sauce, since I'd already tasted the sauce and found it to be too hot for me. I tried one on its own and it was actually pretty okay. The texture was pretty similar to chicken, and there weren't any weird flavors or anything. It was pretty bland alone, as you might expect, so I played around with some seasonings. I had a little jar of Turkish seasoning, which turned out to be very tasty on these wings. Garam masala was also a nice accompaniment. I would have eaten a few more of these, but I had some real-meat wings in the oven, and I wanted to save room for them.

The experience:
Texture - moist and tender and actually pretty similar to chicken
Flavor - not much going on alone, which makes it pretty amenable to whatever you'd like to season it with. You should taste the sauce before adding it, though.

Final grade for this attempt: B+

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