It’s barbeque season and everyone is gorging themselves on burgers. I love me a good burger not just for the patty with a variety of toppings and a condiment or three but also for the SIDES! Be it French fries, potato salad, coleslaw or onion rings, a burger isn’t a burger without them. Which is why, while I was testing burger recipes, I came up with this one for onion rings.
Onion rings are great and they come in a couple of forms, either batter fried or breaded. I like a cross between the two because the batter helps the breading stick and the breading makes the rings extra crispy. I used pancake batter out of necessity as my mother gifted me with a 5 kg bag of mix from Costco. Since I don’t eat pancakes that often, I have to find alternative ways of using it and the mix with leaveners already mixed in works surprisingly well.
Though this recipe will technically serve 4, feel free to double it as the rings won’t last.
They’re THAT good!
Here’s How You Do It
Difficulty Level: Medium
Total Prep and Cook time: 30 Minutes
1 Large Onion, Peeled, Sliced into 1 Inch Slices and Separated into rings
2 Cups of Instant, Just-Add-Water Pancake Mix
1 ½ Cups of Water - You may need to adjust this amount if necessary. You want a batter that's thick enough to stick to a piece of onion but thin enough to not be heavy and clumpy.
2 Cups of Panko Bread Crumbs – Available in the Asian Foods’ section or fish section of major grocery store chains and in Asian markets
1 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder
2 Teaspoons of Salt, divided
2 half Teaspoons of Pepper, divided
½ a Teaspoon of Regular or Smoked Paprika
1 Teaspoon of Oregano or Mediterranean Seasoning – Use what you have
6 Cups of Frying Oil i.e. Canola, Crisco, Sunflower, Corn, Grapeseed, Vegetable – any of these will do
1 Deep Pot or Deep Fryer
1 Long Pair of Tongs
1 Shallow Baking Dish
1 Mixing Bowl
1 Plate or Baking Dish Lined with Paper Towels
1 Wooden Spoon
In a mixing bowl, combine the pancake mix, water, garlic powder, 1 Teaspoon of Salt, and half a Teaspoon of Pepper and mix everything together with a fork. The salt, pepper, and garlic powder will make this batter savory, not sweet.
Set the batter aside.
In a shallow baking dish, combine the panko, paprika, 1 teaspoon of salt, half a teaspoon of pepper, and the oregano or Mediterranean seasoning and mix so the spices are distributed evenly.
Heat the oil in your pot or deep fryer until bubbles form around the handle of a wooden spoon when it’s inserted in the oil. If you’re using a deep fryer with temperature controls, you want the oil at 350 oF.
Dip an onion ring in the pancake batter so it’s fully immersed and then pull it out, gently shaking off the excess.
Dip the ring in the breadcrumbs to coat and GENTLY (so the oil doesn’t splash) drop it in the oil.
Repeat with 3 or 4 more rings to fry them 4 or 5 at a time.
Fry the onions rings until the edges are golden (about 2-3 minutes) and then CAREFULLY flip them over using your tongs.
Fry the onion rings for another minute or two and then move them to your paper towel-lined plate – the towel will absorb any excess oil.
Repeat the process until you’re out of batter and bread crumbs. Any pieces of onion you have left you can chop up and throw into other dishes or use to top your burger.
Now enjoy your onion rings as is or with your favorite dipping sauce or condiment!
-Samantha R. Gold
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