There is nothing quite like french fries or deep-fried onion rings on a bed of fresh lettuce. When using the method of deep-frying, you need to take extra care. Hot oil can be extremely dangerous. Never leave a pan of hot oil unattended; the oil can overheat and catch fire very quickly.
Remember to turn the panhandles away from the front of the cooker to avoid knocking the pan off the hob. It’s advisable to keep the kitchen a child-free zone while deep-frying. Remove food with a large slotted spoon or sturdy tongs that allow the oil to drain as you lift the food out. Here are some easy deep-fry recipes.
Main Dish: Smelt
Choosing smelt: When good, this fish is of a fine silvery appearance, and when alive, the back is a dark-brown shade, which, after death, fades to a light fawn. Smelt should have a refreshing fragrance, just like that of a cucumber.
Ingredients: Smelt, egg, breadcrumbs, flour, butter, oil.
Method: Smelt should be very fresh, and not washed more than is necessary to cleanse them. Dry them in a cloth, flour lightly, dip them in egg, cover with very fine breadcrumbs, and put them into boiling oil. Fry to a nice pale brown, then drain the smelt and place on absorbent paper. Serve with plain melted butter. This fish is often used as a garnish. The preparation time is approximately5 minutes.
Ingredients: 4 green peppers, butter or margarine/oil, egg, breadcrumbs.
Method: Wash the peppers. Parboil in salted water for 5 min. Drain and cut into strips or rings. Remove seeds and inner partitions. Toss in hot butter or margarine in a frying pan for 5-10 min. or dip in egg and breadcrumbs and fry in deep fat (360°F.) for 5-7 min. Drain well and serve hot.
Side-dish: french fries (chips)
Ingredients: 6 medium-sized potatoes, oil, salt
Method: Scrub and rinse the potatoes. Peel them thinly. For chips, cut into sticks about 2 in. long and ½ in. wide and thick. For straws, cut into strips the size of a wooden match. Drop them into cold water as they are cut. Rinse and drain and dry in a clean cloth. Put them into the frying-basket and lower them gently into hot deep fat at 360°F. (Keep the heat fairly high, as the potatoes will have cooled the oil.)
When the potatoes are soft but not brown, about 3 min. for chips and 1 min. for straws, lift out the basket and heat the oil to 375°F. Put back the basket and leave in the fat until the potatoes are crisp and golden brown, about 3 min. for chips and 2 min. for straws. Drain on absorbent paper, sprinkle with salt, and serve immediately.
Note: If potato chips or straws are to be served with fried fish or any other fried dish, the second frying of the potatoes to brown and crisp should be done after the fish is fried. In this way, the potatoes will be sent to the table in their best condition.
Ingredients: 2 cups plain flour, ¼ tsp. salt, 1/4 cup butter or margarine, 1/3 cup castor sugar, ½ tsp yeast, ½-¾ cups warm milk, 1 egg, cinnamon and sugar for coating, oil
Method: Rub the fat into the flour and salt; add sugar. Take out ½ tsp. of the mixture to cream the yeast. Add the warm milk and egg to the creamed yeast and pour it into the flour. Mix well (do not make too soft as the dough is to be cut out). It will rise to double its size. Knead lightly and roll out ½ in. thick. Cut into rings, using 2½–2¾-in cutter for outside and 1½–1¾-inch cutter for the inner ring, and leave on a warm tray for 5 min.
Drop into very faintly smoking fat and cook 5 minutes or till golden, turning over once. Drain well and toss in castor sugar or sugar mixed with ground cinnamon to taste. Note that leaving the dough on the tray may be unnecessary as the first doughnuts may be ready to fry by the time the last is cut.