40 pounds pigtails
4 medium yellow onions
1 bunch celery
2 heads garlic
6 bay leaves
2 cans chipotle in adobo sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons ketchup
¼ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup garlic powder
¼ cup onion powder
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon pepper
4 cloves garlic
¾ cup vegetable oil
Zest of 2 lemons
4 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
Celery hearts, with leaves reserved, sliced very thin
1 bunch radishes, sliced very thin
1 bunch fresh chives
For Braised Pigtails:
Set a convection oven on high fan to 350˚F. Bring a large pot of of unsalted water to a boil and blanch the tails for a few minutes. Drain off the water and divide the tails between two deep hotel pans. Divide the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and bay leaves between each pan. Add some salt to each and cover with cold water. Cover the pans with aluminum foil and put into the oven until the tails are tender but not falling apart (anywhere from 2 to 3 hours, possibly longer). Once the tails are cooked, let them cool in the liquid. Peel off the skin to order, just prior to cutting them.
For Chipotle Sauce:
Combine the chipotle, lime juice, ketchup, brown sugar, and salt in a Vita-Prep and blend until smooth. Season to taste, adding more salt if desired.
For the Seasoned Flour:
Combine the flour, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne, salt, and black pepper. Reserve.
For the Sherry Vinaigrette:
Combine the garlic, vegetable oil, lemon zest, and vinegar in a blend and combine. Reserve contents in a squeeze bottle.
For the Shaved Celery Heart Salad:
Chiffonade the chives. Combine the ingredients so the celery hearts are the dominant ingredient. Reserve salad.
To Assemble and Serve:
Heat the vegetable oil in a deep fryer to 350˚F. Cut the prepared pigtails into sections of 1 to 2 vertebrae per piece. Coat with the seasoned flour; shake off excess. Drop the sections into the hot oil. When crispy, remove the sections from the oil, briefly drain, and immediately toss in a bowl with the Chipotle Sauce. Plate the tails. Lightly dress the Shaved Celery Heart Salad with the Sherry Vinaigrette and season with Maldon salt. Plate the salad on top of the tails.