Deep-frying without a fryer, how do you do it?

Deep fat fryer
Updated on 27 May 2023
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ome tasty fries, fritters or fried chicken, are all delicious from the deep fryer. Lots of British families have a deep-fat fryer at home. But what if you don’t have one? There are other ways to deep-fry without a pan, which I will take you through today.

The theory

Deep-frying is little more than food being immersed in hot oil. This is done at a hot temperature, or at least it should be. The outside is then actually cooked instantly, and the inside is steamed. Because the outside is cooked immediately, no more oil can get to the inside of the food.

So while the high temperature is a requirement, it does not basically require a deep fryer. All that is really needed in this situation is to create the so-called ”frying effect”. So that means you need to find a suitable oil (coconut oil is recommended), heat it strongly between 170 and 190 degrees Celsius and immerse the food in the oil. A deep fryer helps achieve this effect, but it can be done differently.

Another pan

The main way to deep-fry without a frying pan is to find another pan and fill it with oil. It is important to choose a good kind of pan for this.

It is then important to pay attention to two things. First, the pan should be high enough and second, it should be very resistant to heat and be able to hold it. It should have a thick layer of oil and at the same time, food should still fit in it. A pan with a non-stick coating does not retain heat very well. This causes temperature fluctuations. 

Whatever pan you will choose, make sure it stands well and firmly on the stove. A metal wok is widely used for deep-frying, especially in Asia, but a Western cooker often doesn’t have a wok burner on which the thing stays well.

How much oil to use?

The big danger of deep-frying is adding too little oil. Surely a few inches is enough? Sometimes yes, but often not. With something like aubergine, that’s fine, then you can still stir a bit while frying and make sure it browns well on all sides.

But if you deep-fry chips or snacks, you have to completely submerge them in oil. Then you risk it sticking to the bottom of the pan. Use a lot of oil, just a little more than is needed, otherwise your food will stick to the bottom of your pan, which of course is not the intention.

The thermometer

One advantage of a frying pan is that you can set it to a certain temperature, and the light will give you the exact answer as to whether you can start or not. A child can do the laundry. So when you deep-fry without a fryer, it’s a bit trickier.

Fortunately, you can also measure the temperature of the oil in another way. You can use a thermometer, for instance, but you can also use other ways. For instance, you can try using a piece of bread. You can throw a piece of bread of 3 by 3 centimetres into the pan, when it turns nice and well brown within 60 seconds, the oil is around 185 degrees Celsius, which means the pan is hot enough to deep-fry with.

The Airfryer

You saw this one coming, of course. It is also possible to deep-fry with an Airfryer! You don’t do this with oil, but with hot air. Technically, however, you still deep-fry your food through hot air circulation. So it is an alternative to the deep fryer.

Some snacks are less tasty from the Airfryer. However, you can prepare vegetables and meat in the Airfryer without any problems and everything will be full of flavour. Regarding snacks, nowadays there are also plenty of snacks specially designed for the Airfryer, which are adapted to the hot-air effect of the Airfryer and therefore come out slightly better, crisper, crunchier, and tastier.

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Deep fat fryer

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