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January 2007

How To Deep Fry Foods And Use A Deep Fryer Safely

Author: Chef George Krumov

Deep fried foods

Many people this days avoid deep fried foods and rightfully so, however if you do the deep frying at home and know how to do it properly, you can turn anything into a healthy food using my methods and advice. My first advice is to forget about ordering deep fied food at a restaurant or a fast food outlet. It is fried in shortening or canola oil.What's wrong with canola oil, you might say. Canola oil or most other oil that are used in the food service industry, such as soy oil, corn oil, etc. are from genetically modified crops, unless you live in a country where GM food is not permitted. When I fry foods at home, (deep fry or shallow fry), I only use one or a combination of these oils: coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, mustard oil, olive oil or sunflower oil. I consider the first three the healthiest and tastiest cooking oils.

Here are some tips that you should know before you start:

- Always start frying only when the oil is really hot and don't overcrowd the deep fryer, otherwise the temperature of the oil will drop too fast and the food will end up soggy.

- Oil spatters when it's hot, so remove any excessive moisture from the foods before you put it in the oil and use thongs or wooden spoons.

- Oil and water are not known to like each-other too much, but when the oil is hot their encounter becomes dangerous. Avoid any possibility of water going into your deep fryer, even long after the fryer is off. The oil may boil over and spill on the floor and on you.

- Used oil can be strained and re-used several times. Only do the straining when the oil is completely cold. Stope it in a glass jar in a dark place. The lenght of storage and the number of times to re-use the oil depends on what has been cooked in it. For potatoes you can re-use the cooking oil up to 4-5 times. Adding extra new oil to already used oil in order to make it fresher is not recommended.

- You might know this one but it doesn't hurt to say it again. Don't pour used oil in the sink, it will clog it. For example, chicken fat from chicken wings will stick to the inside of the pipes and collect even more garbage until it clog your pipes. Your municipality should have some information available in the telephone books about oil disposal.

- Extra virgin olive oil is not very good for deep frying because it doesn't reach high temperatures. I don't want to deprive myself from the health benefits of the olive oil, so I mix it with sunflower oil and this does the trick. Coconut oil, on the other hand, is great but very expensive. So the same thing goes for the coconut oil. Mix it with sunflower oil or use a shallow frying method if possible to use less oil. And don't worry about the saturated fats in the coconut oil. These are not bad for your arteries.

- Season deep fried food using sea salt or pink rock salt only. I consider those salts healthy because they can leave your body easily. I do not recommend the combination of table salt and fat. The sodium in table salt is not natural for us humans and on top of that there are some weird ingredients in it such as anticaking agents and aluminum. Sea salt is actually better for anything, not just deep fried foods. Cheers.

Chef George Krumov
About the author: George Krumov is a Red Seal certified chef with many years of culinary experience working around the world in Europe, the Middle East, the cruise line industry and North America. In the last two decades he has headed the kitchens of several restaurants in Canada, and ran his own restaurant.

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