Deep Frying at Home is a BAD IDEA

Deep Frying at Home is a BAD IDEA

In general, I think that deep-frying food
at home is a really bad idea. For me. Your situation may indeed be different, but I reckon
that my situation is pretty darn common. To explain why I think deep frying should
be left to the pros, I’m actually gonna give you a french fry recipe; the one time of year
when I do deep fry here in my own kitchen. Oh hey, I want to thank ExpressVPN for sponsoring
this video. If you’re looking to use the internet in a secure and nonrestricted way, go to
and get three months free with a one-year package. After that, it’s less than $7 a month
with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Alright, here’s the one time of year when
I do deep fry here in my kitchen at home. For the last three years, I’ve planted potatoes
in the backyard. My older son’s favorite food is French fries, and I just wanted to
show him where they come from. So, every summer, we all go out back with the pitchfork. Digging
up potatoes is like a treasure hunt. It’s great to do with kids. “Whoa, another one!” “That’s a lot. Here, take that one. Pull it
off.” “OK, I’ll get that potato.” “Nay-noh!” “Go help mommy.” “Oh my — yeah, reach in and — here, put
it in here. Put the potato in there.” OK, now let’s turn these into fries. First
dilemma: What do you fry in? My biggest pot is my 7-and-a-half quart dutch oven. Unless
you really want to buy a tabletop deep fryer, I figure something like this is probably gonna
be your best option. It’s really heavy, which helps to maintain a consistent temperature
of the oil. But even in this huge pot, the most oil I can safely fry in is two or three
quarts. You have to leave space for the displacement of the food, and enough headroom at the top
for things to be able to slosh around without spilling over the sides. Compare that to the deep fryer at my friend
Saralyn’s restaurant here in Macon — Grow. She mostly serves healthy stuff here, so as
commercial deep fryers go, her’s is really small, and yet it still holds 20 gallons.
That’s 53 of these. One reason you want to fry in a lot of oil
is that it allows delicate ingredients to float around in their own personal space without
getting bumped into other objects before they are strong enough to take it, i.e. when they
are crispy and rigid. If you wanted to fry dainty, long, thin fries, you gotta fry them
in tiny little batches, otherwise you’d bash them apart while you stirred them around,
or they’d stick to the bottom of the pan, or they’d stick to each other. So, when I fry fries at home, I use relatively
small potatoes, like these ones from the garden, and I cut them up into wedges. The wedge is
a very structurally sound shape. Look at that beautiful purple breed. I love those. You always want to cut fries way bigger than
you want them, because they do shrink a lot when cooked. Then you gotta get your oil up to temperature.
There’s lots of ways of making fries, but the basic, time-tested method is to fry them
twice, first at a low temperature, like 275ºF, but you gotta overshoot the mark when you’re
heading it up, because look what happens when you put this much cold mass into such a small
volume of hot oil. The temperature plummets. When you fry in a ton of oil, like you can
in a restaurant, the oil temperature is gonna be way more stable. At home, you gotta mother the temperature
like crazy, and that’s especially tough on an electric range, which takes a long time
to heat up and cool down. I’ve gotta move those to keep them from
sticking, and if they were dainty little fries, they’d be breaking apart right now. Hey, let’s think for a second about how
insanely dangerous this bubbling caldron of death is. I only let Freddie look at it for
a minute, with me hovering right over him. Not only does oil get far hotter than water
can, it is sticky, so if it splashes or spills on you, it’s gonna do incredible damage. This stage, called “blanching,” I did for
about 10 minutes. Fries take a long time. Now, you might be thinking, “Man, couldn’t
you have solve all your problems here by just frying in way smaller batches?” Well yeah, but fries are only good if you
eat them right away. What’s the point of perfectly frying a tiny batch of fries if
they’re just gonna get soggy while they sit there and you fry the rest? What the cookbooks generally tell you to do
now is take all the fries out and drain them on a rack, which is a really messy and time-consuming
proposition. Then you crank the oil temperature up about a hundred degrees hotter, and then
put the fries back in in batches to crisp them up. I think that makes a lot of sense
if you’re blanching several batches and then frying several batches, but again, that’s
a messy, time-consuming pain, and it results in a whole bunch of tiny batches of fries
that are not all done at the same time when you want to eat them. So I just do one big
batch, and then when you do that, you really can just leave them in there while you crank
up the heat around them. I’m looking for 375ºF. Again, it’s really hard to hold
any temperature in there consistently. This here is a good draining method. Towel
goes in a big bowl. Lift the fries out with the spider and the towel will absorb the excess
oil. Whip the towel out, put in a bunch of salt, and then toss everything in the bowl.
And, you know, those are pretty good. But now, what do we have? We have a big plate
of fries. We have nothing to eat them with, because imagine trying to grill some burgers
while you’re cooking those fries? I mean, I’m not saying it’s impossible, but it’s
hard. I don’t want to do it. Imagine trying to make fish and chips at home. You’ve fried
the fries, now you gotta fry the fish, and that’s gonna take another 15 minutes. Whichever
thing you fry first is gonna be soggy by the time you sit down to eat. It’s not like
a restaurant deep fryer, which is big enough to prepare an actual entire meal to order
— hot, crispy, done all at the same time. We don’t have that, so we have one big plate
of fries and nothing else. We also have a giant pot of hot oil, sitting
on the stove, making the whole house smell like a county fair. Really, the smell is gross,
and it lingers for days. And you gotta let the oil cool for hours before you can dispose
of it, and how do you do that? You can’t just pour it down the sink, because it’ll
clog your pipes. It clings to the sides. In my fried chicken video, I talked about
burying my fry oil in my garden. I should have emphasized that only works for very small
quantities. Too much oil will make it impossible for your soil to grow anything. So what do you do with half a gallon? You
gotta pour it back into the bottle whence it came, which is gonna require a funnel,
and in the end, I still end up spilling a bunch. Stay out of the shot, Ragusea, stay
out of the shot! Sigh, messy business. Then, what do you do with the bottle of used
oil? Well, you could keep it, and fry with it again. Fry oil does arguably get better
with multiple uses. But if you’re gonna go that, then you really wanna strain it, right?
And unless you fry really often, it’s gonna get yucky hanging around the kitchen, and
I’m sorry, I just throw it out. Back over at Saralyn’s place, they use the
same fry oil for days and days and days before they change it, and think of all the portions
of food that they get out of that. It’s so much less wasteful. Also, a company actually
pays the restaurant to come pick up the old grease and recycle it into biodiesel. I want to emphasize again that my house smelled
for days after I made those fries. I smelled like a carney. I get that fried food is delicious. I get
that it can be really fun to make. I make it sometimes, but really, mostly just for
fun, for the novelty. In general, I think it should be left to the pros. And, you know,
I think that’s just fine. Pan-fried chicken is a totally different animal from deep-fried
chicken, and I really prefer it. The flavor is less oily and the crust adheres better.
It doesn’t crack off in big brittle shards. I have a recipe for oven fries that’s easy
to make at home, and is far better than any plate of “real” fries I’ve ever produced
in my kitchen. I will link to that recipe video in the description once I’ve uploaded
it. This is gonna get a little high-concept now,
but I do think that in my rapidly advancing age, I have figured out one secret to success
and happiness, and that is to stop fighting the fundamental nature of things — of everything,
but especially of yourself. Don’t try to be something you’re not. I mean, unless
you’re a sociopath, in which case, please, fight it. This goes for cooking, too. My advice to you
is, don’t just think about what you want to eat or what you want to cook. Think about
what you and your kitchen are particularly well-suited to cook. And for most of us, I’m
sorry, I just don’t think that that’s gonna be deep-fried food very often. There are,
I think, actually, many things that are better made in a home kitchen than they are in a
restaurant. Unless you’re eating out at a really good place, I think that you are
far more likely to find a good plate of risotto in your own kitchen than you are in a restaurant.
Ooo, that gives me an idea for another video. Gotta put that on the list. Once again, I want to thank ExpressVPN for
sponsoring this video. As a working journalist for basically all of my professional life,
I am a person who definitely appreciates secure and private usage of the internet. I mean,
now, I guess I don’t need to be worrying about people stealing my potato recipes, but I’m
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information can be wide open to hackers on your network when you’re shopping online.
And even if the only person on your network is you in your house, something to think about
is that your ISP can still totally monitor everything that you’re doing online, and they
are legally allowed to sell that information — perhaps even my oven fries recipe! So, this is why ExpressVPN encrypts your data
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100 thoughts on “Deep Frying at Home is a BAD IDEA”

  1. Q: So are you saying that deep frying is bad because you're bad at it?
    A: Yes. I think home cooking should be easy, especially for someone like me who is pretty practiced. To quote MPW, "Cooking should be a pleasure. If it's a job, get a takeaway." (Takeaway is British for takeout.)

    Q: Do you realize those are potato wedges, not fries?
    A: I think that's a distinction without a difference. Long, deep-fried pieces of potato are fries. You want to cut yours into more traditional shapes, go for it. I think the wedge shape is convenient to cut and structurally sound for home frying.

    Q: What if I like deep frying at home? I've made the necessary equipment investments and I'm good at it.
    A: Cool! I'd love to come over for dinner. I'll have to jet before clean-up, tho.

    Q: Are you actually this angry/upset about deep frying?
    A: No, not really. I mean what I say, but I also mean it all in good fun.

    Q: Did you throw that bottle of used oil in the recycling bin?
    A: No, in Macon the green bins are trash, the blue bins are recycling.

    Q: Why don't you buy a cheap tabletop deep fryer?
    A: The money is not the barrier. If I bought a specialized piece of equipment for every cooking task that could use one, I would run out of counter space very quickly. I'm already out of counter space. Also, they seem kinda yucky. If you come from a culinary tradition where you deep fry several times a week, I totally understand how that's a good investment for you. It's rather like a rice cooker; if you eat rice with most meals, sure, makes sense to have one on your counter. That's not my situation, and I'm hardly alone in that regard.

    Q: Wait, aren't you the guy with the three-day lasagna recipe? And fries are too hard for you?
    A: A few points here. 1) As I said in the lasagna video, that's a special occasion recipe for me; 2) While that recipe is time-consuming, I don't find it to be wasteful, smelly, messy, dangerous or unpleasant to make. I find deep frying to be wasteful, smelly, messy, dangerous and unpleasant; 3) That lasagna recipe makes 18 adult portions of food that are all done at exactly the same time. That is not possible without a commercial-scale deep fryer; 4) That lasagna is amazing. I have rarely had Italian-American food that good at a restaurant. In contrast, amazing fries are pretty easy to find at restaurants, which are able to produce them at scale easily and cheaply, unlike me.

  2. I think ur over exaggerating how quickly it gets soggy. At home, I’ve never had an issue with this

    Also, I used to be a fry cook in a restaurant and a big bowl of fries would be good to stay under the heater for up to 15-20 minutes at a time

  3. Frying twice increases the risk of food poisoning.

    You want proper chips / fries, you need to have sugared and salted water and soak for an hour and fry in high heat ONCE ONLY and perfect fries.

  4. In the country turkey, you can bring your used oil to schools, there are containers special for used oil. Then they collect all the oil and make bio diesel.

  5. Just do multiple batches, if you make the fries right they’ll stay crispy. Especially if you store the batches in the oven while the others cook.

  6. As a professional, I can vouch for the risotto thing.
    A proper risotto takes about 20 minutes to cook starting from uncooked rice, and that's what you want to do to get ALL of the starches out of the rice into the liquid for a good creamy risotto. There are very few restaurants where customers will allow that sort of time (and maybe 20 minutes doesn't sound so bad, but food doesn't magically start cooking the second it's asked for, and the food doesn't teleport from the pan to the table either), so restaurant risotto tends to be cooked about halfway, so you've lost some of that starchy creaminess.

    Can also agree with the deep frying thing. A professional deep fryer is great. You turn it on and it's hot all day, can cook a lot of stuff and the shape of the well is specifically made to allow for displacement of the oil. Even WITH a home deep fryer, it sucks. Have to heat it up for one meal, it's tiny, and doesn't work nearly as great, then it has to be cooled down, the oil filtered or tossed. A huge pain in the ass, and that's WITH the specific kitchen gadget designed to make it easier.

  7. millenials: they complain way too much. have you ever thought frying in a wok. Try it it'll give you another perspective, and yeah sometimes good cooking gives work

  8. Get a fryer not an fing pot, you reuse the oil, you have a lid and much more control, even cheap ones are safer that a pot and they most likely cost less than a good Dutch oven also you fry the fish and chips in the same batch you dim c*nt, why do you think everyone who isn’t a chef only fries once, sausages you can fry them, oil should be changed ever 2 months in a normal fryer, also when I fry I don’t get any smell so I haven’t the slightest clue what smell you’re talking about also shallow frying is a lot more dangerous due to you having to flip what you have in the pan, you need to be close and don’t be a wuss oil doesn’t hurt, and just nitpicking but a lot more things in everyday life get hotter than water, for instance a cooker gets to higher temps than water, do you still let your kid near it?

  9. LOL…I think Adam needs a xanax when it comes to deep frying. Boil some vanilla or diffuse some essential oil or burn a candle. Vanilla is really good at removing cooking odors.

  10. I've legitimately never found deep frying to be difficult. It's just like boiling only way hotter. Safety isn't an issue as long as you take appropriate cautionary measures.

  11. I’m with you. Deep frying at home sucks which is why I don’t do it. Plus, the smell inside my house isn’t worth whatever I made.

  12. How would I make eggplant parmesan without deep frying it? Pay high restaurant prices on a fixed income? What a pussy.

  13. From the Fries country Belgium, the fries have to cool between the two fryins. This makes a big difference in the crispyness and taste. You can even do the first frying session the day before

  14. Problem: temperature reduction
    Solution: cast iron

    Problem: oil disposal
    Solution: use shortening. Easy to scoop out of pot and store for multiple uses. Easy to toss out when done.

    Problem: smell
    Solution: not an issue if you’re fast

    Using these methods, I can make make fries in 15 minutes flat from starting the stove to eating the fries.

  15. Your friend's restaurant has an absolutely filthy kitchen. That fryer looks like it has not been cleaned in ages. I'm not just talking about the oil itself. The baskets and the unit were covered in crusted on food. I don't care how busy they are, that is weeks, possibly months worth of filth.
    The walls in the kitchen are just as dirty. Gross. Can't believe she would allow that to be filmed.

  16. I went to see your videos to change my mind and run away from my problems and 7 min later here I am getting lectured about happiness and my poor life choices

  17. Why not just but a small deep fat fryer? Keep a window open and if you can’t recycle pour the oil in the garden in a shallow layer. Sorry to
    mess with your concept, but it’s really not that complicated!

  18. I have a deep fryer in my home and it helps greatly and i only clean it and filter it once a month or once every 3 months it depends on how much times it used and how dark the oil is and i only cook fries or dumplings in it i cook my chicken in a wok or high wall skillet because the chicken makes my oil super dark its not a bad idea to deep fry at home if you know what you're doing

  19. Ok but deep frying isn't that difficult :/ I make some nice fried chicken every other week or so.

    No jokes in this comment, nothing about frying in crude oil or injecting peanut oil into my veins.

  20. You're right american people should not deep fry at home, you're lacking skills and intelligence to manage hot oil without hurting yourself.
    The restaurant frier you're showing is absolutely disgusting, your friend is aware he can clean it more often then once a year?

  21. I live in North Carolina …. and I do my frying out on the back porch. Makes clean up pretty easy … and no crazy smells … especially fish.

  22. I love how french fries are absolutely not like the way we cook them in France. First, in the North of France and Belgium we use beef fat not oil, second we use high starch potatoes but not right away from the garden, they need to age and third fries need to be fried twice, first à 160C then 180C

  23. A bad thing is its not cost effective, if you plan to go all out deep fry you would have to use 1 to 2 liters of oil to at least enable the food to submerge and "swim" If you are deep frying large amounts you need larger radius pot, which will demand larger amounts oil. You can recycle and reuse the oil however if today you fried chicken, tomorrow you plan to deep fry seafood? The next day fish? Different flavors now got mixed up with oil and it will mess up your flavor

  24. You just literally said that the oil get super hot and it’s a pot of death..
    My brother literally touched the oil at I think 300 degrees not that sure.

  25. Adam how am I able help you earn a few pennies when the “ads” are over 5 mins for a STUPID target commercial/documentary🙄

  26. Well thats just like… Your opinion man…

    I live in a studio with my partner and we have a tiny pan we fry things in regularly

    Chicken, poppers, fries you name it

    Honestly coming off privlidged here

    Please know I'm being sarcastic. All that ive and you habe said is true but can only really rarely become hazardous. I hope there arent people out there so dim they make it so.

  27. Q: So are you saying that deep frying is bad because you're bad at it?

    A: Yes. I think home cooking should be easy, especially for someone like me who is pretty practiced. To quote MPW, "Cooking should be a pleasure. If it's a job, get a takeaway." (Takeaway is British for takeout.)

    For me, I started cooking at a young age for my family, my father and stepmother were to old.

    Deep frying for me has been, effortless so it's kind of funny to see someone so skilled get frustrated/disagree with such an easy thing.

    If you're going to deepfry, use a fucking actual deepfryer and not a pot and oil… That shit to me has always seemed so dangerous and you never have enough oil in a pot compared to an actual fryer with depth.

    This title is a little misleading… NO ONE SHOULD DEEP FRY WITH A POT, get yourself an actual counter top deep fryer and you'll find this video a little bit… obnoxious, unnecessary and just plain silly and fear mongering.

    PRO TIP: Get a pot of water and throw some salt in it, boil it, throw in some french fries and pull them out juuuust before they go soft.. set aside to steam dry, once theres no moisture left on them and no steam billowing off them. Deep fry them. Crispy exterior and a soft interior. Restaurant quality…

  28. I feel like this video is like what they do on those wheredidthesodago type infomercials where they just make up some problem and then run with it. Frying isn't that hard / frying and cooking at the same time isn't hard / buy frozen chips? / you literally skip steps that you complain about ahaha this was not a good argument not to fry at home tbh.

  29. The basic idea here is do not make french fries. In fact, stop doing things altogether. Too much can go wrong. Find pictures of golden french fries online and stare at them.

  30. Safest and best is to use a ninja air fryer. best fries I ever ate without deep frying and you can cook a sizeable amount to crispness with very little oil. Best thing I ever bought. By the way I had a power air – it stinks and delaminated the non stick coating in a month. I called them and they said they would send me a new basket. The basket didn't arrive and I called them – at which point they told me that there was no record, I passed the date that they would give me one free and I would have to pay. I told them to F-off and threw it in the garbage.

  31. 01:25 "Unless you really want to buy a tabletop deep fryer" – 5 seconds of a 10 minute video spent casually dismissing the easy solution to most of the problems you describe.

  32. Youtube cooks: "You don't need a deep-fryer, you can just deep-fry in a pot :)"
    Also Youtube cooks: "Deep-frying is shit and awful and hard and I hate it"
    Gee, I wonder why.
    $50 for a Presto Granpappy. When you're done frying, you just keep the oil in the fryer.
    Put it in the fridge and it'll keep longer. Put it in the freezer and it'll last just about forever.
    Did nobody tell you that you can just put cooking oil in the garbage? It's biodegradable. It's non-toxic. Oh no, you spilled a little in the sink.
    Add a little soap and wash it down. Like you've never washed a greasy pan before.
    Imagine a "Changing your oil at home is a BAD IDEA" video where you complain that you can't bury used car oil in your yard or pour it down the sink.

  33. I bought a decent sized fryer from amazon.
    It’s easy to use and, since I don’t live in a shoebox, I have plenty of room to store the fryer.
    I personally have a commercial exhaust over my stove, but if you don’t, you can always fry outside ( that’s what I used to do)
    Overall, deep frying is not as laborious as depicted in this video.
    Btw, fry oil can be slowly burned in a campfire or charcoal grill ( I emphasize SLOWLY!) don’t go dumping a gallon on a fire! Use common sense

  34. But you got to have those cheese beignets with the recipe from that huge French cooking picture book from the 80s or 90s. Stupid good.

  35. I put the fries and the oil in the pot cold as as it heats up its slowly cooking by the time it reaches 350 it’s cooked all the way through and crispy and as it is coming up to temp you can prep everything else the best part no spitting hot oil the only downside is you still have to strain the oil that’s the main reason I don’t deep fry it’s the amount of oil that is wasted and the smell but you can always fry with the vent fans on with the windows open

  36. 1. Frying at home IS A PLEASURE YOU UNCULTURED SWINE, serving perfectly cooked, hot, crispy things to friends and family is a joy.
    3. Use an electric fryer. Get a countertop model, the larger ones have built in filtration, hold a LOT of oil, and have more than enough room for stuff to float around.
    4. Speaking of items, if items are falling apart, you're just bad at this. Don't blame the craft. You can get better.
    5. Use the countertop electric fryer by a window fan on exhaust. The aerosolized oil will go out the window and not in the house. Could also try under a range hood if it vents to outside.
    6. Good countertop electrics also have carbon filters to take the oil out of the steam that comes off during cooking, which cuts down on lingering odor dramatically, even without a proper fan.
    7. Countertop electrics are immensely safer than using on a stove. They have simple temperature controls and will never ignite their oil via overheating, let alone via direct flame.
    8. Always have your fire extinguisher nearby when frying. This is good for cooking in general, and with a countertop electric it's very unlikely that you would figure out how to fuck it up enough to cause a fire (then again, you did make this video, so who knows), but it's still good to be prepared.
    9. Speaking of preparation, you can put a large sheet pan underneath the fryer, so if you do fuck up and cause a spill over (happens with freezerburned items), hot oil is contained in the tray.
    10. Fries are delicious on their own, what the hell is wrong with you.

    This is not hard if you get an actual fryer and prep at all, instead of being a whiny little bitch.

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