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Table top fryers

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
Wife's b-day is comming up and I'm try'n to figure out what to get her. She doesn't like to cook that much, unless it's pretty easy. We like some fried things, fish-n-chips, mt. oysters, fries, onion rings, tater tots, etc.; but our fryer is a pain, small, and just sucks. I'd like one where the heating element goes into the oil and has maybe two baskets(don't have to be big). There is one that has "Bam's" name on it(Emeril) that sounds kinda good, but one basket...not the end of the world.

Would like easy to clean/dishwasher safe(cept for element) and somewhat attractive on the counter(not like those fry-daddy buckets)

Any help is appreciated. If I'm think'n wrong, let me know. Right now when we fry I do it in a wok and don't get much done. Plus it's a pain to monitor the temp.(lazy)

Thanks
post #2 of 33
IMO counter top fryers are a waste of space and money. Instead of frying in a wok try using a thick stock pot. It's as simple and maintenance free as frying gets.
I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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post #3 of 33
None of them are acurate or any good. You are better off with a heavy pot full of of oil, a strainer basket and thermometer.

PS' The heating elements on most of them burn out in a matter of months.:lol:
CHEFED
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CHEFED
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post #4 of 33
Good to know, Ed, that you've personally tested them all and found them wanting.

Except you skipped mine---which is accurate to within 1 degree at any setting, comes with one large and two small baskets, and does the job as well as any commercial fryer I've used. Been using mine more than two years, now, and the element has shown no sign of burning out.

Big Al: Problem is, you've got contradictory requirements. For example, many (most?) of them are as ugly as homemade sin, and are the antithesis of attractive on the counter.

Cleaning is always a chore. Even if the unit is microwaveable, you still have to empty it. If it were just a matter of pouring oil out of the fryer hopper that would be one thing. But keep in mind you straining it as well, so as to maximize use of the expensive oil. Time consuming, if nothing else. And awkward in the larger-sized units. And, of course, the heating element has to be hand-washed regardless.

That said, if you do a lot of frying, and have the room for one, they can be a great addition to the kitchen. I used a cast-iron kettle and thermometer for years, and my biggest problem wasn't actually frying, or even clean-up. It was maintaining the proper temperature. With a built-in thermostat, that's no longer a problem.

Based on my experience, I'd say the inclusion of multiple baskets is more a marketing ploy than a realistic aid. It sounds good to have two baskets, so you can fry different things at the same time. But, frankly, in the two+ years I've had my unit I have never used either of the two smaller baskets. So weigh that idea carefully.

Also consider operating cost. The larger units require a gallon or more of oil to operate safely. In theory, and depending on what you fry, you can get as many as five uses out of it. But I've never gotten more than three, even filtering it after each use.

So, as with anything else, there are pros and cons. But, overall, I glad I got mine, despite it's drawbacks.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #5 of 33
Thread Starter 
KY, what did you get?
post #6 of 33
I can understand why Al had difficulty with the temperature in a wok but with a heavy stockpot it should be a non issue. While I haven't tried every counter top fryer those I have used really struggled to maintain a proper temperature once you began cooking. With a stock pot you simply bring the oil to temperature. If you are frying a lot or larger items you have the option of using more oil so the temperature will remain stable unlike a counter top fryer. If the temperature does drop you simply turn the heat up and the response is immediate unlike the electric elements in most home owner counter top fryers.
When I fry at home I check the oil to verify it is up to temperature. After that it's a fairly moot point. The oil is hot and you fry until what you are cooking is done. If the temperature drops you turn the heat back up.
The biggest pain with either method IMO is filtering and storing the used oil.
I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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post #7 of 33
The ones I've tried have been a waste of money.
The one recurring fault is their poor recovery time.
I actually enjoy my wok, but others are right, a big pot and basket works great and can also be used for other things instead of just frying.
I too would be interested in which one KYH uses, if we could be deemed worthy enough to have that knowledge bestowed upon us. :roll:
I would like to be able to recommend one to friends and family and at this time I can't.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #8 of 33
You can split the difference with a special pot called (wait for it) a "deep fryer." They range from fairly to very heavy and are usually fairly large, I'd guess 5 qts minimum. What makes them deep fryers is that they have a flange coming up from the back of the pan on which you may hang your frying basket (which comes with the pan).

A stove top set up like this is less expensive, and, in some ways, more convenient than a counter top fryer. It is even uglier, but perhaps easier to store.

I gotta tell you though that if I were buying one for my wife's birthday I'd throw in some jewelry, concert tickets, or something(s) else of the "good things come in small packages" variety, a think she'd think was "considerate and thoughtful;" and give to it (preferably them) to her immediately after telling her the fryer was a gag. That is, if I wanted to live to see my own birthday.

You're a better man than I am, Gunga Din.

BDL
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http://www.cookfoodgood.com
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What were we talking about?
 
http://www.cookfoodgood.com
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post #9 of 33
I'm with you on this one, BDL. My first reaction was, "why would somebody do that?" But he did ask.....

Duckfat, you're absolutely correct. Filtering and storing the used oil is the biggest bother, no matter what you use as the fryer.

Jim, unless you were overloading it, I don't understand your reference to recovery time. My unit actually seems to recover faster than when I was using a cast-iron kettle and thermometer. But it might be a volume of oil thing, as my fryer holds more oil than I used with the kettle.

In either case, when you add the food there is an immediate drop in oil temperature, which then recovers as the food fries.

My problem with a kettle is that it required constant heat adjustments. I don't have to worry about that with the fryer.

For those who asked, the unit I use is a FryPro2. It's made in China, and there have been some legal and other problems with the importer, so I don't know if it's even available anymore; at least not under that name.

Here's another part of the equation: How many of you really think a fry basket is necessary? When I was using a kettle, I merely use a spider to scoop up the finished food. And, truth to tell, our of habit I most often do the same with the fryer, kind of forgetting that that's why the basket is there.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #10 of 33
I never bother with a basket.
I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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I think the most wonderful thing in the world is another chef. I'm always excited about learning new things about food.
Paul Prudhomme
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post #11 of 33
Thread Starter 
Thanks alot ya turd.;):lol::lol::lol:

Is a counter top fryer not a deep fat fryer?
post #12 of 33
Thread Starter 
Also keep in mind that it's gotta be quick and easy to use. 2 kids in sports, me gone alot and need'n fast meals. It's easy to pull out the bucket w/oil and do some fries(frozen) and some fish sticks(frozen), or what ever else they want. Could bake, I know. Could microwave, too.

This idea is going down faster than the Titantic. :lol:
post #13 of 33
Size (as KYH alluded to), food temp and quantity all help the fryer work or fail.
Many countertop units are just too small for most families.
Obviously a fresh tempura prawn is going to allow the oil to recover faster than a frozen product.
Overloading is easy as you are trying to get enough in and out to feed your family in a short amount of time.
If you're eating while frying then not as much of a concern.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #14 of 33
Hang on just a little while longer. Ron Popeil is coming out with the last project of his career. He said he's been working on it for the last 4 years. He told me it used Olive Oil and was reusable. He said a lot of other things about it which I hate to admit I don't completely recall. But I have heard that it's coming up for a big push any day now. Should be interesting. I know he was very excited about it!
My latest musical venture!
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My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
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post #15 of 33
The Ronco Pocket Fryer?
Awesome!
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #16 of 33
Check out a product called "Actifry", Amazon sells them and there are lots of reviews for this minimum oil fryer for the home. No don't have one but it's intriguing.
post #17 of 33
Thread Starter 
Nice bash, "thanks".
post #18 of 33
Wasn't a bash, and certainly wasn't aimed at you.

Maybe I should've included a :roll: , I dunno.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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post #19 of 33
Thread Starter 
:lol: Ok, gotcha.
post #20 of 33
:D
No, probably not. He seemed very excited about it (obviously) and I honestly had my doubts. But he was very nice and helpful to me, so I will wait and hope for the best that it turns out to be a good product.
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
Reply
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
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post #21 of 33
I'd have to agree that giving a deep fat fryer is just a short step from giving her a vacuum cleaner...not a very sexy gift. Still, if you're not worried about her tossing a pan full of hot oil on you I find a good stand-alone fryer to be a pretty handy tool.
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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post #22 of 33
Thread Starter 
You all made me nervous, so I got her a neat picnic basket w/all the "bells and whistles". She liked it and was happy. I also got her a table top, quick and easy to use, deep fryer. She, and the kids, were really excited about the fryer.:lol: More so than the basket, which I thought was really neat. :o

I appreciate all the help and hope I can help you all some time. Thank you.:thumb:
post #23 of 33

Counter top fryers review

Hey Al,
I keep an eye on Cooks Illustrated, Americas Test Kitchen reviews. They rated the Ware Pro Professional Deep Fryer( Digital Fryer) as the best in overall results: size, temperature accuracy, heat recovery time. All of their reviews stated that all fryers over shot the temperature set, however this fryer only lost 40 degress and recovered.
I searched for it , but for some reason it's no longer made this year by Ware Pro. The only model that was close that I researched was their less expensive Professional Model which had the same capacity. I did buy one for my son-in-law as I found it on sale, but he's not getting it until Christmas. I believe Bed,Bath and Beyond carries it.
The one I would have bought for myself was at Williams and Sonoma kept in in stock retail and it was about 199.00. They no longer carry it and are carrying a 499.00 model by Krups and I would love to have that one but I won't spend that kind of money. My thoughts are that if you have a variable electric stove, you also have to deal with that with a iron dutch oven / Le Cresuet dutch oven which is really the best for results.
The best method per the reviews came down to a Cast Iron Dutch Oven or Same size enameled Dutch oven and a good thermometer for "candy/frying". Make sure you check your thermometer for accuracy it should read 212 in boiling water. I had one that was defective. But had it not been discontinued for some reason, the best preformance would have been the digital Waring Pro as above.

Hope that helps muddy the water.
Sherie
post #24 of 33
Be sure and adjust for elevation changes in the boiling point or that technique won't work right. More so for candy temps than frying but still, calibration requires you know the boiling point in your elevation.
post #25 of 33
while not elegant, my Hamilton Beach deep fryer is certainly functional. Digital controls, large capacity, quick recovery times, and ease of cleaning are all good features. Cost was about $40 bucks.
post #26 of 33
I'm not a pro or cooking expert, so this reply is just info or opinion.

We never owned a deep fryer or did much more than fry some chicken in a skillet. Then our kids got older and we started entertaining more. Can't have a Super Bowl party with out Hot Buffalo Wings, and other deep fried goodies. So in a last minute rush I ran down and got a simple Rival no frills electric counter top deep fryer. It does about 10-12 wing pieces at a time. We have owned it for about 4 years and use it about 4 or 5 times a year. The product has done its job and I have no complaints.

However if I was to do it again I would order online a 10 or 12 qt stainless deep fry pot with basket & thermometer.

The problem with my current electric deep fryer is versatility, and quantity. I have cooked for 20+ and it is a chore to do a lot of frying in multiple batches. I have been tempted to throw a lot of oil in my stock pot, but my stock pot isn't designed for high heat. As for versatility the electric fryer just sits in storage until its party time, where there would be other uses for the stainless deep fry pot. Clean-up has been mentioned and my electric completely comes apart making it easy to clean, but that is easy in cleaning like 4 different things, verses just cleaning a pot and basket.
post #27 of 33
I just got a Waring Pro counertop deep fryer, but I haven't used it yet. :roll:
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~Shermie.
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I'm a Supreme fan of Bentley Green & Aaron McCargo Jr.!


~Shermie.
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post #28 of 33

Consumer reports rated a load of them and the brand with Emerils name on it got best rating . It self filters and  stores the oil in an under pan type setup. It was also most expensive around 169.00-199.00.Saw it in a Macys and compared to others was quite heavy. Have never used it so do not know from personal ex. I have one , got as gift use it about 5 times a year. It's a big fry daddy. All I can say is that it fries.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #29 of 33

Well gosh, GM, nothing like joining a group just to spam it out of the box.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #30 of 33

Deleted post.

Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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