Are you a fan of fried foods such as fried chicken, French fries and the like? Ever wondered how they turn into the best deep fryers? If you do, then reading this article will give you a brief description of the principles of your deep fryers.
Deep frying or deep fat frying is a cooking process wherein food is sunken to a pan full of fat, most commonly of oil, and then cooked at a high temperature. Deep frying is composed of more than a few chemical reactions, but a common belief states that deep frying makes the food oilier. This is contrary to the truth since deep frying is one of the examples of dry cooking.
The first phase is also called the “initial phase”. In this phase, the oil is brought to a temperature between 325-400ºF. The sudden increase in heat cooks the food’s exterior and traps the moisture of the food.
The water content that gets trapped inside the food becomes water vapor. The vapor, in turn, cooks the food. This has the same principle as you cook a potato which uses the idea of boiling. That is why this phase is also termed as “surface boiling”.
A barrier is formed, keeping the oil to leak out. This happens when small bubbles appear through the boiling process. This maintains the food as dry as possible through the whole deep frying procedure.
The bubbles present are actually water just in the form of gas when the food comes in contact with the hot oil before exiting the food.
Water and oil have different polarities, meaning both cannot dissolve in one another. Thus, no oil reaches the food’s exterior parts. The bubbles serve as a screen so that no oil can infiltrate the food.
At this moment, there will be a decrease in water transport and the remaining water becomes vapor within the food. This phase is also called the “decreasing heat transfer”.
This phase is also called the “bubble end point” for a reason since, at this point, the bubbles already disappeared from the food’s exterior. It is recommended to take out the food from the heated oil to avert the oil from getting inside the already deep-fried food. This is done because the bubbles that protect the food are no longer present on the food’s surface.
You must take note of the temperature you have so that the oil’s temperature reaches at a range of 325-400ºF when heated on deep fryers. This is important for the phases of deep frying to take place. If this temperature can’t be observed, you will have a raw food because the food’s surface can’t protect itself from the oil and the oil will break in the food’s insides, making it fatty and greasy.
Moreover, you should not leave the food inside for longer periods of time than its ideal time to be fully deep fried. The bubble that supposedly shields the food will no longer be able to protect the food from the oil. Hence, you will have an identical result as the former.
These two factors must be in equilibrium to obtain a dry coating of your deep-fried food.