A deep fryer is one of the most versatile and multipurpose culinary appliances that you can have in your kitchen. When it comes to cooking delicious donuts, crisp French fries, and crunchy chicken wings, deep fryers are your best bet. Deep fryers are also a better option than conventional ovens as the former requires much less oil for deep frying. Hence they keep your food yummier and less greasy.
However, a deep fryer is not precisely a standalone kitchen appliance. It will not let you rustle up deep-fried treats without using any accessories. Continuing to use a deep fryer without accessories will adversely affect the unit’s smooth functioning in the long run. It may even shorten its shelf-life. Deep fryer accessories are a must if you want to keep cooking a variety of fried entrees perfectly. It is also helpful to maintain the unit in tiptop condition.
Some of the essential accessories that you’ll invariably need for making the most of your deep fryer include:
- fry basket
- heating element
- sediment tray
- thermostat & so on.
The following are the ten most essential deep fryer accessories. Reading them will make it easier for you to make mouthwatering deep-fries.
Skimmers serve a similar purpose like the fryer basket, and therefore you can use the former to supplement the latter’s use. They are necessarily sieves or colanders that are welded to a robust wooden or carbon fiber handle for picking up food from the frying chamber. Skimmers are available in varieties of fine, medium, and coarse, with the little ones being the most expensive amongst the lot.
How you use a skimmer differentiates this deep fryer accessory from the fry basket or tub. While you lower the basket in the frying compartment for taking out the entire batch of food, you use a skimmer for removing a small batch. Additionally, skimmers come in handy when you are cooking or deep frying different items simultaneously and want to remove a specific item when it’s fried.
If you want relief from the hassle of having to raise the basket every time you want to take out a small batch of fries, then buy skimmers.
Fryer baskets and tubs are the most significant amongst all deep fryer accessories you’ll need for making crunchy calamari, tempuras, and fried cheesecakes. You simply cannot think of using a deep fryer without a fry basket or tub. Fry baskets are just what you need not only for holding the food but also for removing the same once it is completely fried.
A fryer basket also allows you to scoop out a small portion of the food to check whether the same has been fried perfectly. You can also use a skimmer for this purpose as it spares you from the trouble of having the lift the basket. You’ll come across different types of fryer baskets available in a wide range of sizes and shapes.
You should opt for a basket whose shape matches that of your deep fryer. So if the frying chamber of the unit is rectangular, then go for an oblong-shaped basket. At the same time, pay attention to the fineness level of the basket’s mesh or wired lattice.
While some baskets have a wonderful mesh (i.e., have tiny holes), others have coarser wire networks typified by large openings. The food size you intend to fry will determine the type of mesh your basket will have.
Though the premium models of deep fryers usually come with a built-in thermostat for presetting the temperature, it is not quite effective. Thermostats embedded in deep fryers, by and large, feature a heat intensity scale graduated in a range of 1-10. Nevertheless, this scale does not always allow precise setting of frying temperature for a wide variety of deep-fried goodies.
And this is exactly where a thermometer can come to your aid. Any experienced chef or cook is aware that chicken or egg rolls need to be fried to the optimum level to make them appealing. A thermometer lets you constantly check the temperature of the cooking oil, thereby enabling you to realize that your food has been fried to perfection.
Thermometers compatible using with deep fryers are constructed from toughened glass or plastic material and are installed on one end of the fryer. These thermometers are long enough to be plunged deep inside the cooking oil.
A splash guard, as the name indicates, is an accessory that helps prevent the splashing or splattering of searing oil, which could cause scalding. So it does not need to be emphasized that a splash guard is an essential accessory to go for if you intend to use the deep fryer regularly. Splash guards more often than not double as fryer covers, protecting your unit from airborne impurities and contaminants and dust.
Splash guards are usually made of industrial grade stainless steel that covers the unit when it is not in use. A splash guard comes with a surface coating that lets you easily wipe off the greasy deposits and can also be detached for thorough clean-up.
Oil Pump and Filter
One of the most glaring downsides of using a deep fryer is that you have to invest heavily in cooking oil. Though many models come preassembled with an oil filtration system that refines the oil to make it fit for reuse, the processing is not very effective. Simply put, if you attempt to use the same purified oil multiple times, foods fried in the oil will not be conducive for your wellbeing.
This is where an oil pump with the filter will come in immensely handy, enabling you to save upfront on oil. The oil pump and filter will help you to filter and clean the cooking oil much more efficiently than the deep fryer’s filtration mechanism. As a result, you’ll be able to use or rather reuse the oil multiple times without having to worry about its adverse effects on health.
Gloves or Mitts
Though you should put on mitts or gloves whenever you use a deep fryer. Gloves compatible using with deep fryers are stitched from hardy and resilient heart-resistant fabrics. These fabrics are embroidered from warp threads comprising of a blend of heat-resistant fibers, nylon, and cotton.
There are many types of heat-resistant fibers, including carbon fibers, Aramids, carbon precursor fibers, melamine fibers, glass fibers, and much more. The mitts cover the entire lower arm as well as a part of the upper arm, thereby protecting your upper limbs from the sizzling oil and the hot metallic fry basket. Gloves not only protect your hands from oil splashes but also allow you to cleanse the unit when you’re in a hurry and need to fry multiple batches.
You’ll need a quality cleaning solution together with a cleaning brush for thoroughly cleansing your deep fryer. Hence, a cleaning brush goes hand-in-hand with a cleaning solution. Brushes with long and hard bristles help you to scratch on and grade away deep-seated food crumbs and sediments from the frying compartment.
You can also use cleaning brushes for scraping away dregs and oily deposits. They are handy for serving trays, tableware, dishware, and food baskets. Cleaning brushes can help remove residues and sediments from areas that the dishwasher cannot reach.
If you wish to use your deep fryer for the long-term, you’ll need to keep the unit in shipshape condition. A dishwasher, more often than not, fails to completely remove the entrenched oily sediments and crumbs in the fryer. Commercial cleaning solutions, when used in conjunction with high-quality cleaning brushes, could go a long way in helping break-up the deep-rooted greasy dregs in the fryer.
These cleaning solutions help disintegrate the oily deposits and, at the same time, protect the deep fryer components.
A cooling rack is another crucial accessory that should be on your must-have deep fryer accessories list. Cooling racks made from robust stainless steel or aluminum wires hold food as it cools. Additionally, many cooling rack models come equipped with containers for holding the excess oil dripping from the fried treats.
Food Basket Liner
A food basket liner comes in perfectly handy for helping check the deposition of crumbs and sediments. Especially due to serving trays, cone wire baskets, and dinnerware. Not only do food basket liners prevent the buildup of greasy residues and dregs in dishware and tableware. They also make your meals appear more appealing. The best thing about food basket liners is you can easily and safely dispose of them.
Food basket liners are indispensable when it comes to serving meals in cafeterias, snack bars, fast food centers, and bistros. You can line your plastic tableware, dinnerware, dishware, and serving trays with food basket liners. They are recommended when you serve brunches, chicken wings, mozzarella sticks, and other fried entrees. You can pick and choose from precut individual pieces or sheets of food basket liners. Use them for drawing them out from dispenser containers for lining trays and dishware.
There are many other accessorial items apart from the ones listed above that you can use alongside your deep fryer. Using accessories along with your deep fryer enables you to prepare fries quickly, easily, and safely.