Freshly deep fried chicken sure does taste heavenly. But cleaning out the deep fat fryer is a chore that seems to take forever – fret not! Just follow these steps.
Steps To Clean An Electric Deep Fryer At Home
- Unplug the deep fryer. Let oil cool down to about 150°F
- Use a spider strainer to remove large pieces of floating food debris
- Strain the cooled oil into an oil container. Do keep track of the number of times you’ve reused it. Throw away the bits and pieces of food particles and crumbs caught in the strainer
- Soak the wire basket with warm soapy water
- Scrape out as much build-up as possible from the inside of the fryer pot, especially the corners. Food particles build-up if not cleaned out properly can lead to contamination of the new oil. This will cause the new oil to break down faster as well as affect the flavors of the fried food.
- Soak up oil residues with paper towels.
- Fill up the fryer pot with water up to maximum oil level marking. Add a few drops of dish soap. Turn on fryer to get the water to boiling hot. Unplug fryer and wait for water to cool down – about 30 minutes
- Drain out the water and wipe the fryer pot until clean. You might need to rinse with warm water a few times to get it to be really clean. After washing with soap solution, rinse your deep fryer with a vinegar water solution. This helps to neutralize any remaining soap residues
- Wipe the outside walls of the fryer with soapy water to remove any caked on grease. Do not use anything harsh to prevent permanently scratching the outside surface. Lastly wipe with dry towels.
- Scrub the frying basket and wash under warm running water until clean
- Clean the lid, heating elements etc
- Clean the oil filter (if your fryer comes with one) with warm soapy water using a soft bristled brush.
- It is best to clean after each frying session before you get those terribly-hard-to-clean caked on grease
Let the hot oil cool down before cleaning – about 2 hours
Using Vinegar And Baking Soda To Clean A Really Greasy Deep Fat Fryer
For stubborn oil stains, use a vinegar plus warm water solution to soak the fryer or frying basket.
Then scrub with a scrubber or sponge. Rinse with water until clean.
You can also try using the baking soda plus water method. Mix baking soda with water to make a thick paste. Rub all over the stubborn grease spots with a sponge. Let it stand for a while. Then scrub with a sponge or clean cloth until stubborn grease stains are removed. Rinse thoroughly with water until clean.
Another method is using baking soda together with vinegar. Pour a layer of baking soda over the bottom of your fryer. Then slowly pour vinegar over it. After the fizzles have subsided, scrub with a scouring pad (remember to wear gloves). Rinse with warm water.
Always unplug the machine before cleaning
How To Prolong The Lifespan Of Your Fryer Oil
- Wipe food dry with paper towels before deep frying. Water and oil can be dangerous. Besides, oil quality deteriorates when water from the food being fried escapes into the hot oil. This causes the oil to turn rancid resulting in unpleasant odors and flavors in the fried food. Besides, the smoking point of the oil will be lowered with excessive moisture in the oil
- Do not season food with salt over the deep fryer. Sprinkle salt onto your fried food after it has been removed from the boiling oil, away from the fryer. This is because salt plus smoking hot oil create free radicals. These free radicals create impurities that speed up the break down of the oil, resulting in rancid aromas and flavors.
- Do not use unnecessary high heat when deep frying. The higher the temperature, the faster the rate of oxidation, meaning the oil breaks down faster. Try to keep cooking temperature below 375°F.
When To Discard Used Fryer Oil
Always filter your used oil if you intend to reuse your fryer oil.
Filtering your fryer oil makes it last longer and your food taste better.
When your fryer oil starts to foam and smoke or your fried food has an unusual taste, it’s time to discard it.
Degraded oil has a dark color compared to the lighter color of natural oil.
Related post : Using a wok to deep fry
How To Remove Unwanted Flavors Trapped In The Used Oil
- After filtering the oil to remove the crumbs and bits of food, pour it back into the cleaned fryer or a clean pot. Switch on the fryer or heat up the pot of oil. When the oil is heated up, put in a few slices of raw potatoes
- Remove potatoes when golden brown. Theses potato slices would have absorbed the flavor of whatever food you’ve just been deep frying
- You can now refrigerate the cleaned oil once it’s cooled completely
Why Is It Necessary To Filter Fryer Oil Before Storing
- Frying oil passed its prime comes with potential health risks
- Your food might not be properly cooked
- More oil is absorbed into the fried food resulting in higher level of fats
- Filtering the oil removes food particles to prevent bacterial growth
- The degraded frying oil contains higher levels of oxidized lipids and acrylomides. The Joint Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) concluded that acrylamide is a human health concern
How To Store Filtered Oil
Filtered oil should be stored in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dark spot or you can refrigerate it.
Storing in a hot, humid and bright spot will cause your oil to deteriorate faster.
Never submerge electrical components in water
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Here’s an article on how to filter frying oil using coffee filter or cheesecloth