Thread Number: 73880  /  Tag: Small Appliances
Do you use a deep fryer?
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Post# 975930   12/28/2017 at 22:48 (321 days old) by fan-of-fans (Florida)        

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We have had a few Presto Fry Daddys over the years. We really don't do much frying anymore, most frozen items like fries or fish we bake. The only time we use the fryer anymore is if we have a fish fry. It was a mess to clean and I think health-wise we are better off baking items instead. Plus there is no smell.

I guess people do still use deep fryers as there are a number on the market, some even similar to commercial countertop fryers which I noticed was a trend that started around the early 2000s.

I would guess those fryers would require quite a lot of oil compared to a small Fry Daddy. Some models do seem to have a drain which drains the oil into a drawer container below the unit.

Post# 975931 , Reply# 1   12/28/2017 at 23:20 (321 days old) by petek (Ontari ari ari O )        

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We have a Fry Daddy but seldom use it anymore as well. The latest trend seems to be those air fryers or Tfal rotating ones.

Post# 975934 , Reply# 2   12/29/2017 at 00:06 (321 days old) by superocd (PNW)        

Yes, but seldomly. My wife and I are OCD and frying in the house is a big no-no, so on the rare occasion we want to deep fry something we do it out on our deck with a Fry Daddy (or do regular frying with an electric skillet for something like bacon, burgers or fish). However, living in the PNW (rain) and being married to a nagging (just kidding) wife who is a health nut and an RN in the cardiac unit pretty much precludes the opportunity for frying.

Out of all of the fryers out there, the Fry Daddy seemed the easiest to clean. I just wished it was dishwasher safe. In fact, when I bought it I was pretty sure that it was dishwasher safe much like the electric skillets and griddles are, but completely forgot that the tstat is in the base at the bottom. Even still, it beats a fryer made of plastic with tons of crevices.

Post# 975936 , Reply# 3   12/29/2017 at 00:44 (321 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, Thereīs a Lady on Stage)        
Have a vintage cast iron Wearever "chicken" frying p

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That is nice and deep, along with a "Chicken Bucket" pressure deep fryer (also by Wearever), and finally a Dazey "Chef Pot" that also deep fries; none of them have seen regular or any use in years.

Haven't made fried chicken or any such thing in donkey years. Besides the health issues, cannot abide the smell (that lingers) and mess that comes afterwards.

Even for steaks that once loved doing in a cast iron skillet then finishing off in oven, now go in the broiler.

Post# 975937 , Reply# 4   12/29/2017 at 01:03 (321 days old) by ea56 (Sonoma Co.,CA)        

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Iím with you Launderess, I seldom fry anything now either. Itís been at least 2 years since I fried chicken. I love using the broiler, especially since I found out that I donít need to leave the door open on our oven when I broil, hence no odors! I also have a Hamilton Beach Contact Grill that is wonderful for hamburgers and boneless chicken breasts or pork chops.

And I make homemade oven fries, instead of french fries and we like them better than french fries. I just wash and dry russet potatoes, one per serving, leave the skins on and cut length wise into 8 wedges each, sprinkle with salt and pepper, pour about 2-3 tbls.of oil onto the potatoes that have been placed on a baking sheet, toss to coat with oil and place flat side down, and bake in preheated oven at 425 F for 15 mins, turn potato wedges over and bake another 10 mins. No grease smell from frying and these oven fries taste really good.

When I do fry anything, I use no more than 1/2 inch of oil, instead of deep fat frying. Of course if I were to make donuts Iíd need deep fat, but the last time I made donuts Reagan was president!

This post was last edited 12/29/2017 at 07:38
Post# 975938 , Reply# 5   12/29/2017 at 02:04 (321 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

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Add me to the list of people who haven't done any deep fat frying in a long time.


I had, at one point,a small Presto fryer that I found at Goodwill. By small, I mean small. It the smallest eletric fryer I ever saw--a better match for a single person living alone than typical fryers (including models from Presto). I can't honestly remember using the thing...although I have a memory that suggests that I did use it.


In any case, it would have been 10+ years since I did any deep fat frying, with, or without, the Presto.


My last period of deep fat frying that I definitely remember was done on the stove, and it was French fries and IIRC onion rings. That was 25+ years ago. Sad, now that I think of it, because I liked both...


For me, it wasn't an issue of worries of fat (although I do have concerns arise fairly recently about how healthy cooking oil is...). It just seemed that I drifted away from deep fat frying. In the last 20 years, I've been mostly a "keep it fast and simple" cook.


One other factor: deep fat frying wasn't something I grew up with. My mother had a fryer, but it broke when I was young, so anything traditionally fried was either prepared some other way (e.g., Shake 'n Bake for chicken, frozen French fries), or purchased already made (e.g., donuts).


I think the only reason I might have had a phase with doing it with that Presto (assuming I did use it) was just because it would have been a new toy...

Post# 975939 , Reply# 6   12/29/2017 at 02:19 (321 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

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Another thing I dislike about deep fat much oil it uses, and the cost of buying that oil. I suppose it might only be $2 of oil if one bought a store brand...but even at the best of times, I've been cheap...

Post# 975940 , Reply# 7   12/29/2017 at 02:32 (321 days old) by Spacedogb (Lafayette, LA)        

I have the TFal Actifry and I don't find its that great of a fryer.

Post# 975941 , Reply# 8   12/29/2017 at 03:27 (321 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, Thereīs a Lady on Stage)        
Crisco Helps

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There is a myth that good fried chicken requires lots of oil; it doesn't.

My family is from the south and there isn't anything mother and her people, nor daddy's side of the family don't know about frying chicken. All you need is chicken, some flour, a bit of seasoning, and enough fat/oil/lard/Crisco to reach about half way up a cast iron frying pan.

Since good lard is nearly impossible to find any longer, one sticks with Crisco or peanut oil for frying. Thankfully no one is allergic to nuts, however if making anything fried for a group or people not personally known, will use another type of fat/shortening to be on the safe side.

Most important thing about any frying is oil must be at the right temperature. Too cool and instead of nice crust you get a greasy mess because food will absorb. The other way (too hot) not only burns things, but outside cooks much to fast and you end up with dark (or burnt) outsides and raw inside. *NOT* something you want with fried chicken.

You see that brown paper bag Miss Minnie uses? That could be my mother, either grandmother, various aunts and whoever else was going to fry anything from fish to chicken.

Post# 975946 , Reply# 9   12/29/2017 at 06:09 (321 days old) by spacepig (Floridas Emerald Coast)        

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Growing up in Louisiana, almost everything was fried growing up, but the only deep fryer we owned was one to cook a turkey. Like Launderess said above, my grandmother used a cast iron skillet with oil about 1/2 way up the chicken. She would dredge the chicken in water and then flour. My mother (her daughter), used a magnalite pot, and did virtually the same thing, except dredging in milk before the flour.

I purchased a deep fryer as an adult, but use it mostly to fry things like french fries or chicken nuggets when we want something fast. We subscribe to things like Hello Fresh and Home Fresh, and they typically call for frying in a cast iron skillet as stated above.

Post# 975953 , Reply# 10   12/29/2017 at 06:40 (321 days old) by Frigilux (The Minnesota Prairie)        

On the rare occasion food requires deep-frying, I use a 4-quart saucepan and a candy/frying thermometer on the range.

The electric model I once had (a Rival, maybe?) was slow to recover the correct temperature after food was added.

Post# 975956 , Reply# 11   12/29/2017 at 08:17 (321 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
I have a Fry Daddy in the basement

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The last time I remember using it was New Years eve 2004 when I made blooming onions.

Other than that when I fry chicken I use a cast iron chicken fryer on the countertop induction burner. I like to use peanut oil, as it handles the higher temps better without stinking up the house. Most of what I fry anymore is catfish. Once in a very great while I will do actual fried chicken, but most of the time I "oven fry" my chicken, or use the air fryer.

I do still love me some KFC or Popeyes chicken though. Hey, you aren't going to live forever.

Post# 975972 , Reply# 12   12/29/2017 at 09:49 (320 days old) by fan-of-fans (Florida)        

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Several years back I got a tiny deep fryer/cooker from the thrift store. It has a small square basket and is a Dominion/Hamilton Beach Tall Fry. It would use a very small amount of oil, but it's brand new and I have never used it. Unfortunately someone must have swiped the lid and instructions before I got it, because my neighbor that worked there at the time, when I told her I bought it, said that they were with it originally.

A lot of frying, mainly fish, fries, etc, I remember being done on the stove in a textured aluminum dutch oven like pot. Personally, I don't want to fry on the stove. I'm sure it's probably not all that difficult to be sure the oil is at the right temperature, but I'm afraid of the fire risk of overheating the oil, or that it will spill over and ignite. With an electric fryer, most of those issues are eliminated.

Post# 975978 , Reply# 13   12/29/2017 at 10:04 (320 days old) by kenwashesmonday (Haledon, NJ)        

We had a DeLonghi Roto Fryer for about 10 years.  They're really only big enough for two people, and it doesn't take much oil to fill it.  I was very impressed with the machine, and it was pretty easy to clean.  After 10 years of use it really needed to be disassembled for a complete cleaning, but we decided to trash it and we haven't replaced it.  One of the reasons I we did away with it is the current price of peanut oil.  The other reason is that my partner has to watch his cholesterol.

Post# 975979 , Reply# 14   12/29/2017 at 10:11 (320 days old) by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
I love deep fat fried food.

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But I only fry outside. Too stinky, too dangerous.

Post# 975984 , Reply# 15   12/29/2017 at 10:44 (320 days old) by parunner58 (Davenport, FL)        

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We have the Waring Pro fryer and I love it. Used mainly for chicken and home made french fries. The frozen stuff, I just convection oven them. It comes all apart and goes in the dishwasher except the heating element. I have had the old Sunbeam, which are fantastic, T-fal, which was ok and I think a Presto fryer. My T-fal and Presto were dishwasher safe. But out of all the Waring is the best one, fast recovery and easiest to clean.

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Post# 975999 , Reply# 16   12/29/2017 at 13:13 (320 days old) by petek (Ontari ari ari O )        

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I remember seeing those Waring Pro.. so I just googled them.. and was led to a site selling Cuisinart fryers which look the same.. Turns out Conair who owns Cuisinart also owns Waring.

Post# 976018 , Reply# 17   12/29/2017 at 15:06 (320 days old) by StrongEnough78 (California)        

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My Mom got me a Gran Pappy fryer a few years ago and I love it. I use it whenever I fry chicken or french fries. Even those frozen hash brown patties come out so good in the fryer. We recently found her Fry Baby she's had since the 70s. We use it for smaller portions of whatever we want to fry. It still works although I think it needs a new cord. We don't constantly eat fried foods but when we do, might as well make it easy and fun.

Post# 976032 , Reply# 18   12/29/2017 at 16:51 (320 days old) by scoots (Chattanooga TN)        
My Mom had a Dormeyer 6000

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She bought one early in her marriage, so when I first start having kitchen memories, this appliance was kept over the refrigerator and never used so far as I know, except for a single batch of doughnuts.

When I got old enough to appreciate machinery in the 70s, I asked about it. She bought it in the early 60's because she came from a poor family and my father's salary permitted her the discretionary money to buy what she'd never had before. It was also a tremendous learning moment for her not to be swayed by what the Jones' had, and to scrutinize advertising claims.

While it did work perfectly and was built like a tank, she regretted the purchase right away. It used *vast* amounts of oil that could not be used for anything else. Dripping hot oil made it a challenge to use, and she was terrified that I might pull on the power cable and get scalded.

She kept it on the shelf for years and eventually threw it out with out me knowing it. About 5 years ago I purchased a similarly lightly used one on eBay for $30 I think. I fell in love with it as a piece of machinery all over again, but *Instantly* saw for the first time what my mom talked about with the amount of oil required.

To this day it sits ... again ... over the refrigerator. Perhaps one day I will answer my hankering for a deep fried Monte Cristo sandwich (Curse you Shrek for putting THAT in my head), but until then I think I'm going to stick to regular sandwiches.

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Post# 976049 , Reply# 19   12/29/2017 at 20:41 (320 days old) by cuffs054 (MONTICELLO, GA)        

Mom had a Dormeyer that she used for fish and fries but always in the garage on a newspaper covered table. Don't know what happened to it.

Post# 976066 , Reply# 20   12/29/2017 at 22:41 (320 days old) by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
I have one

Of those Dormeyers new in the box, and just about every other kind known to man,,LOL, Sunbeams, Westinghouses, West Bends,Dulane FryRytes and on and on..Very seldom use them, my favorite is the Westinghouse that looks like a bowl, they work really well.

Post# 976073 , Reply# 21   12/30/2017 at 01:32 (320 days old) by mikael3 (Atlanta)        

I like my vintage Sunbeam.  I mainly use it for catfish, which really is best deep-fried.  I only use it outdoors—fish odors AND fry odors are not happening in the kitchen!!

Post# 976169 , Reply# 22   12/30/2017 at 16:27 (319 days old) by CircleW (NE Cincinnati OH area)        

I rarely eat fried food, as I've had heart problems. If I do, it's at a restaurant maybe once every couple months. French fries at home are baked in the oven.

As for odors, a good vent hood, with ducts to the outside, should take care of that.

Back when I was a teen, I got it the habit of making French fries in a frying pan. One day (when home alone) I left them cooking while I went outside to the neighbors yard. The grease caught fire, and caused over $5000 damage, mainly from the smoke. I thought my parents were going to kill me when they returned. No more frying for me for a long time!

Post# 976179 , Reply# 23   12/30/2017 at 17:15 (319 days old) by GusHerb (Chicago/NWI)        

I have a Presto deep fryer with digital control but haven't used it in probably a decade. They require lots of oil and no fryer ever seems to get hot enough. I just do it in a pan and use butter or Ghee which withstands high heat quite well. I love to fry in coconut oil, butter/Ghee, and animal fat. Those options are healthier than using vegetable oil. 


Over Christmas I fried the potato pancakes in Ghee on the new Zojirushi electric griddle I got, they were the best I've made yet. 

Post# 976186 , Reply# 24   12/30/2017 at 17:38 (319 days old) by Gyrafoam (Roanoke, VA)        

I'm southun. I can fry food in a hub cap if I need to. Any pot deeper than two inches is ok, too. I have an old Dormeyer I can use for a crowd and a huge old chicken skillet.

Post# 976834 , Reply# 25   1/4/2018 at 12:05 (314 days old) by washerboy (Little Rock Arkansas)        
reuse the oil

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Not that my mother fried a whole lot; in fact it was a treat it was so rare; but she always reused the oil. She had 2 bottles/containers for oil. One for fish only and the other for chicken, orka, potatoes. Guess that's about all she fried...she never made homemade donuts..ha!

Post# 977094 , Reply# 26   1/6/2018 at 03:48 (313 days old) by Stan (Napa CA)        
I'm still frying Chicken in this

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If I don't have leaf lard, I'll use Crisco.
Cast iron is what I'm use to.. Theres probably a better way?
I season chicken, shake in a bag (paper or plastic) in reg flour, or self rising.
After frying I pour left over oil in a can and throw out

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Post# 977138 , Reply# 27   1/6/2018 at 11:49 (312 days old) by mikael3 (Atlanta)        

Where do you get good leaf lard?  The only sources I know sell rendered lard only, seriously over priced.  I’d prefer to render my own.

Post# 977164 , Reply# 28   1/6/2018 at 15:10 (312 days old) by Michaelman2 (Atlanta, GA)        
Leaf Lard in Atlanta

I found it at the Spotted Trotter, 1610 Josea Williams Drive, Atlanta. It is rendered and a bit pricey.

Post# 977166 , Reply# 29   1/6/2018 at 15:12 (312 days old) by twintubdexter (Palm Springs)        
Open Floor Plan = Stinky House

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I've got one of those fancy new deep fryers with the charcoal filter. I used it twice entertaining guests at my kitchen island. That part was fun watching them sip/guzzle cocktails down and quickly eat up each batch of tempura-like goodies as soon as they were done. What was not fun was the way my entire house smelled for 3 days afterwards...welcome to "Joe's Greasy Spoon Diner". I suppose I could have put the fryer under the range hood but out in the patio would have been better.


Last month I had a 30% discount from Kohl's as well as some of that "cash" you earn for buying stuff you don't need. They offered free shipping too so I got one of those "air fryers" for less than $30. I've used it a few times for frozen stuff and it seems to work pretty well...certainly not like oil deep fried food but OK. Even though it shoots air out of the back there's not much odor and stuff comes out fairly crispy. It's super easy to clean, a big +. I'm going to keep it out on the counter and try and use it often since my addiction to small appliances means there's not an inch of cupboard space left.

Post# 977175 , Reply# 30   1/6/2018 at 16:56 (312 days old) by ea56 (Sonoma Co.,CA)        

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Joe, to help eliminate cooking odors next time you cook something that stinks up your house try putting a shallow dish of white vinegar on the counter. Believe it or not this really does work. Somehow or another the vinegar absorbs the odors.

Iím like you, I canít stand lingering cooking odors in the house. Our range vent isnít vented to the outside, it just has a charcoal filter that isnít much help. So in addition to putting out the vinegar we also have a room air filler that we run whenever I cook anything that creates any odor, and this seems to help a lot.

Post# 977180 , Reply# 31   1/6/2018 at 17:24 (312 days old) by abcomatic (Bradford, Illinois)        

My Mom had a deep fryer and the name on it was Southern. She kept oil in and one day it fell out of the lower cupboard where it was kept, onto the floor. She got so angry with all of that oil on the kitchen floor that she threw it out of the back door on to the driveway! lol She did and retrieve it back. Gary

Post# 977181 , Reply# 32   1/6/2018 at 17:34 (312 days old) by abcomatic (Bradford, Illinois)        

This post has been removed by the member who posted it.

Post# 977257 , Reply# 33   1/7/2018 at 01:48 (312 days old) by SudsMaster (East of SF, West of Eden, California)        

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I fried up some bone-in skin-on chicken thighs a couple of months ago in a big 12" T-fal covered frying pan. It came out just fine; the tricky part was monitoring the oil temp.

I also brought an Oster electric deep fryer out of storage. It is convenient to use; with a hinged ventilated cover, a lift handle that can raise the basket with the cover on, and a fairly reliable thermostatic control. It just doesn't have the capacity of the big frying pan, but is great for fries.

I've been research what's the best frying oil... high polyunsaturated vegetable oils are currently frowned upon, because they oxidize so easily in high heat. The best seems to be avocado oil or coconut oil. But both tend to be a bit pricey. Lard is another possibility. I used canola oil, which has a better mono to poly saturated ratio than other veggie oils, but it still tends to oxidize. Safflower oil is another possibility, with a lower poly ratio, but it can be harder to find in shops. In addition to being though healthier for frying, lard and coconut oil can be reused more times than high poly oils.

Post# 977261 , Reply# 34   1/7/2018 at 02:08 (312 days old) by Stan (Napa CA)        

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I get leaf lard here from a organic butcher shop already rendered. It's sold in glass jars.. not much bigger than baby food jars. It's a bit pricy.
To render it yourself, you might be able to ask your butcher.. Ask your butcher to save some of the fat from near the kidneys, aka leaf lard, not back fat. Then you'd have to render it, and put it up at home.

Hi Eddie, I'm going to try the vinegar tip. I have no exhaust vent/fan so best I can do is open doors, windows, ceiling fans, close doors I don't want the cooking odors going into.

Post# 977267 , Reply# 35   1/7/2018 at 02:58 (312 days old) by SudsMaster (East of SF, West of Eden, California)        

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I keep the deep fryer in the patio kitchen, which is partially open to the outside air.

Post# 977323 , Reply# 36   1/7/2018 at 14:01 (311 days old) by RevvinKevin (So. Cal.)        

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Until recently I think I have personally only deep fried once (or twice?) in my life. When I was younger I remember my mom making donuts (deep fried) a couple times.

My other half is from the Philippines and they deep fry pretty regularly. After seeing the mess that was made on and around the the stove, I bought this little (1.1 L capacity) Farberware deep fryer. I figured I'd give it a shot as it was only $20. Once I figured out what the temp needs to be, it works great I cooks things quickly and things are very tasty. However the health aspect of eating fried foods kept dancing around in my head and it hasn't been used for the last 3-4 months now.


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Post# 977338 , Reply# 37   1/7/2018 at 16:11 (311 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, Thereīs a Lady on Stage)        
Everything in moderation.

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Long as one is not consuming fried foods on a regular and consistent basis the odd one offs likely aren't going to harm. That is unless one has issues with cholesterol or some such and have been warned off by physician's advice.

Other worry seems to be the possible carcinogens generated by changes caused in frying. Well same things are said about broiling and other ways of creating searing and or using high heat to cook/create a crust.

Post# 977340 , Reply# 38   1/7/2018 at 16:48 (311 days old) by mikael3 (Atlanta)        

I have bought rendered leaf lard from the Spotted Trotter, which was the source of my complaint about cost!!  I’ve asked around for the raw stuff, but no shop I know of can get it.  Specialty restaurants and the Spotted Trotter are apparently buying it all up!  Another problem is that almost no one is raising lard hogs anymore, so no one has the yield they used to have.  Such a shame.


Beef kidney suet is also tricky to find, but it is possible.  I ended up buying an awful lot, which has lasted a few years.  So far, no freezer taste, but my luck is going to run out soon.  There’s nothing in the world like frying potatoes in rendered suet, but I keep most of mine whole for steamed puddings.  I only need 4 oz at a time, though, which is why my 10 lb supply is still with me!!

Post# 977371 , Reply# 39   1/7/2018 at 20:02 (311 days old) by SudsMaster (East of SF, West of Eden, California)        

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As far as I can tell, the main health danger from deep frying is when the high heat causes poly unsaturated oils to break bonds and reform as trans fats. These are to be avoided at all cost. Oils that are primarily monosaturated or fully saturated are more resistant to the formation of trans fats, if at all. This accounts for the recommendation of fats that are solid at room temp, like lard or coconut oil, or highly monosaturated, like avocado oil.

I would also recommend frying no more than to the stage where the breading or batter or skin is golden, not darker brown. This means fewer toxic compounds like acrylamides may have been formed. Acrylamides are suspected carcinogens. It will also give a less bitter taste to the final product. So if you naturally tend to avoid bitter foodstuff (like dark bread crust, brown fried food, etc, as I always have) then so much the better.

Post# 977709 , Reply# 40   1/10/2018 at 02:01 (309 days old) by iej (Ireland)        

I don't own one. They were a very standard kitchen item here in decades past, particularly for making home made chips (French fries).

Post# 977717 , Reply# 41   1/10/2018 at 05:39 (309 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, the Netherlands)        

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I never owned a deep fryer, but last year I bought a Philips Airfryer XL. It's OK. Foods tastes different than from a deep fryer, often dryer. It's like a hot air oven, the air moves very fast. When it gets used it's often for potato croquettes. I always keep some in the freezer. I prefer fries from a deep fryer.

The Philips XL has a problem specific for that model, it tends to smoke. A special lid over the food seems to help, but models from other brands don't seem to have that problem.

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