The most popular item at Andy Ricker's celebrated Pok Pok restaurant - Ike's Vietnamese Fish Sauce wings - are legend. This slightly simplified version is something that you can easily prepare at home. Enjoy!
Finely chop garlic, sprinkle salt on top, chop together for 15 seconds, add mixture to small bowl. Add 1/4 cup warm water, let sit for 3-5 minutes.
Set a fine mesh strainer over another bowl. Pour the garlic mixture into the strainer and use a back of a spoon to smoosh the garlic to extract as much liquid as you can. Save the garlic.
Whisk the fish sauce and sugar into the garlic liquid until the sugar has dissolved. If the bowl is too small, find a bigger bowl or container or ziplock plastic bag so that you can fit the chicken wings. Add the chicken wings. Toss well. Cover and marinate for 4 hours - overnight. Toss and mix so that you coat the chicken at least once or whenever you remember to do it.
Fry the Garlic
When you've finished the marinade and the chicken wings are chilling in their new home, you might as well fry the garlic. Add 1/4 cup vegetable oil or peanut oil to a frying pan over medium - high heat until it shimmers.
Add the minced garlic (that you saved from the marinade, you saved it right?)
Fry the garlic until it is light golden brown. Transfer to paper towels to drain the oil. Save the garlic in an airtight container until you are ready to eat. You also save the garlic infused oil for something else or do what I am doing right now, and use it to fry some pork chops (I'm actually using pork neck) seasoned with the spice of the gods - Vegeta. Mmm. Mmm. Mmmm.
Fry the Wings
Take the wings out of the fridge. Put wings in colander and drain for 10 minutes over a bowl so that you keep the marinade.
Pat the wings dry with paper towel.
In a pot or frying pan, heat oil for deep frying over medium-high heat (oil depth should be enough to cover wings)
While the oil is heating up, put 1/3 cup corn starch or tempura batter in a shallow bowl or plate and coat the chicken wings.
Fry the wings in batches until golden. This will take 8-10 minutes. Don't overcrowd the pan. Observe social distancing people!
Once the wings are cooked, drain on paper towel. Let sit.
Finish the Dish
In a small saucepan, add the leftover marinade, simmer over medium - high heat until it thickens. Skim off scum.
Toss and coat the wings with this delicious sauce. Add coriander, mint, and fried garlic. Mix with positive emotion. Serve.