When I was a kid, I regarded the onion ring with suspicion. A deep-fried vegetable? I had my doubts. It wasn’t until I realized that said vegetable was wrapped in a thick, savory batter (and that it sure smelled good, even from across the table) that I decided to give it a go. Wow! The onion ring—the ultimate comfort food.
So here comes June 22…National Onion Ring Day. Yes, please. Only I’m going to raise the stakes a bit this year by offering you some techniques that will take a simple onion ring batter and turn it into a culinary tour de force. The onion is already a strongly-flavored vegetable, so the trick is to use flavors and blends that will enhance the onion’s natural taste and add new dynamics. With Vik’s Garlic Fix! Spice Blend or Smoked BBQ Rub, for example, your onion ring batter becomes a super-textured blend of savory spices. Or…wait for it…turn your batter into a hopping good time with the addition of Beer Powder. You can thank me later.
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Simple Spiced Onion Rings
From the Grocer:
1¼ Cups all-purpose flour
¾ Cup cornstarch
1 Cup buttermilk
5-6 Cups vegetable or canola oil
2 large yellow onions, peeled and sliced into ¼” inch full round rings
WHISK flour, cornstarch, Vik’s Garlic Fix or Smoked BBQ Rub, and Beer Powder in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
POUR buttermilk into a separate mixing bowl.
HEAT oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat to 385°F. Using an instant read thermometer will assure accurate temperature reading.
DIP ¼ of the onion rings in buttermilk, lightly shaking off excess buttermilk.
DREDGE onion rings in flour mixture, shaking off excess, and place on a large plate.
CAREFULLY place coated rings in hot oil, and cook 2-3 minutes until golden brown, turning ½ way through with tongs.
TRANSFER cooked onion rings to paper towel-lined baking sheet.
Yield: 4 servings
Total Time: 13 minutes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 3 minutes