Food And Football – Make Yourself Some Fish Sauce Wings While The Ducks Take On The Huskies

University of Washington football coach Jimmy Lake stepped in it earlier this week when he disparaged the academic rigor of rival University of Oregon ahead of their annual matchup this weekend.

Naturally, we can’t let this one slip by—and not just because of Lake’s slip up. This is the game of the week, and it has the potential to reroute Washington’s otherwise unillustrious season so far. It also has the potential to derail Oregon’s current standing as one of only four College Football Playoff teams.

The last thing Lake should have done is insult Oregon as an inferior institution as far as academics are concerned. Especially since the last thing the underdog Huskies need is a better Oregon team to come in here and play angry and insulted. Even without the extracurricular commentary, this was a lopsided matchup, and now it may be even more so.

Then again, the Huskies have looked a little better as of late. Anything could happen. The Huskies could find their extra motivation and decide to show Oregon that their academic superiority is second only to their gridiron prowess. 

Let’s talk about a delicious football snack to pair with this game, though first, we should divulge a rather indelicate conclusion that we arrived at while researching this week’s column. While Oregon may be a beautiful place with lots of wonderful ingredients, there is a certain dearth of actual dishes that hail from the Beaver State. And by dearth, we mean zero, as far as we can tell.

So instead of a regional recipe, let’s honor one of the greatest restaurant dishes to come out of Portland in recent memory. Let’s talk about the fish sauce wings from Pok Pok! And since it looks like the entire Pok Pok restaurant empire has now gone under, the only way you are going to have these wings again is if you make them yourself.

Here’s a great video from the Oregonian featuring Pok Pok owner Andy Ricker himself. And if you want to make them at home for watching the UW-Oregon game, here is some additional context:

  • The wings need to be marinated overnight in … you guessed it, fish sauce (among other things)
  • Since this recipe involves deep frying—messy and dangerous—make sure you know what you are doing before attempting to execute it. It might not hurt to make sure you’ve got a fire extinguisher handy
  • If you do go through with it, plan on eating a lot of these, especially if you love wings. When prepared correctly, they are the ultimate conglomeration of salt, sugar, and fat

So get yourself ready for this Saturday night matchup. Marinate your wings first thing in the morning, if not the night before. And with a 4:30 p.m. kickoff, at least part of this game ought to qualify for Pac-12 After Dark and all its kookiness. And when your buddies ask you what you’re making for the game, send the shrug emoji back. Tell them you plan to wing it. 

About Paul Redman 119 Articles
Paul Redman is a writer and chef in Seattle who grew up in the Midwest. His work has appeared in print and online, including San Francisco magazine, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and Contrary. He eats too many chicken wings and cracks way too many dad jokes and food puns. Follow him on Twitter @predman.

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