Sunday, January 5, 2014

Onion Strings

Happy 2014 food people.  Any food-related resolutions this new year?  I have the same one every year, to watch what I eat.  Which means I have to keep my eyes open while stuffing my face.  Hard to do sometimes.

Let's kick off the early part of 2014 with a side dish.  These onion strings, or onion straws if you prefer, really amp up a home-cooked burger.  Other delicious applications could be a grilled steak or atop some mashed taters.  Comfort food, perfect for the cold days in the next couple months.  Very simple to make as well, just need to factor in the soaking time.

Don't want to buy buttermilk just for this recipe?  Take one cup of regular milk and add 1 tablespoon of plain white vinegar.  Stir and let sit for 10 minutes.  You'll have nicely thickened soured milk perfect for this recipe.  

You should have a candy thermometer or similar for frying foods like these strings.  How else do you make fried cod on a Friday night or cook cast-iron fried chicken??  Don't have a thermometer?  Stick the end of a wooden spoon in the oil, if it sizzles around the wood the oil is hot enough to fry. 

This recipe is adapted from one of my new favorite people, The Pioneer Woman.  Her blog, cookbooks, and instagram photos are all fantastic.  I did leave out the cayenne, at the lady's request.  If you like a little cayenne certainly add a pinch to the flour. 

Don't overcrowd the pot, fry in batches.  I didn't separate the onions very well after the flour, so they came out a little clumpy.  I didn't mind, since they were going on a burger anyway. 

Onion Strings
2 servings as side

1 large yellow onion
1 C buttermilk
1 C AP flour
1 ts kosher salt
1/4 ts freshly cracked black pepper
2 C canola oil

Halve the onion lengthwise, then very thinly slice crosswise.  Place into a glass pyrex cup or shallow dish.  Cover with buttermilk and soak for at least 30 minutes up to an hour.

Heat the oil over medium-high in a sauce pot or dutch oven to 375°F.  

Place the flour in a shallow dish and season with salt and pepper.  When the oil has reached frying temp, remove the onion from the buttermilk with tongs.  Drip dry and then dredge in flour, shaking off the excess.  Plunge into the hot oil and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes.  Drain on a sheet pan lined with paper towel.  Serve very soon thereafter on whatever needs some fried onion love.  

Onions soaking in buttermilk-

Onion strings resting-

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