Cooking With The Butterball In-door Turkey Fryer
I know it's not barbecue, but indulge me for a minute. The folks over at Butterball sent me an indoor turkey fryer to try out this year. At first I thought they were nuts. Why would I want to fry a bird inside? All that hot oil is dangerous, and frying stinks! The house would smell for days. I was a bit dubious in trying this out, but finally curiosity got the best of me.
I've been frying turkeys outside for years. There's nothing like the flavor of a fried turkey - it puts the oven roasted bird to shame. But frying a turkey outside is a hassle and it's dangerous as hell. Every year I read stories of people whom have lost their homes due to turkey frying accidents.
But this seemed different. Looking over the fryer, it seemed safe and well built. So I picked up a 12lb turkey and defrosted it in the refrigerator for 2 days until it was completely thawed. Seasoned it up and got it ready for it's hot oil bath.
This machine has some really nice features. It has a porcelain-coated pot that's dishwasher-safe and can be used for steaming and boiling, in addition to frying. The fryer includes a drain valve to make clean-up easy and only needs two gallons of oil. It also has an adjustable thermostat and a digital timer, that help make indoor frying simple.
A couple of words of caution. READ THE MANUAL and FOLLOW ALL SAFETY PRECAUTIONS. If you've never deep fried before, you need to know what to expect. Adding any food to any hot pot of oil will cause the oil to bubble up. Adding wet food will cause the oil to bubble and spout.
OChef put it this way..."The instructions advise you to wear oven mitts as you slowly lower the turkey into the fryer, and that is absolutely correct. The lowering process was a little scary and it took us about a minute to submerge the turkey in the oil. The moisture in the turkey causes the oil to bubble and we had to lower it slowly to keep the oil from splashing out of the fryer. If you're also standing there in bare feet, you'll have nearly 60 seconds to curse your stupidity as you wonder if scalding oil will spatter out on the tops of your feet (it will not, if you're careful. You may be wistfully thinking of an apron at this point, too.)" It's a great point.
One other thing to think about. This is a large appliance Lowering and removing a turkey into the fryer takes some room. On my counter top I found that the overhead cabinets got in the way. Next time I use this I'll do it on the kitchen table.
You'll have to trust me on this folks, as my camera crapped out taking the pictures, but this appliance made and incredible moist and tasty bird and some really outstanding french fries. The cover kept the bubbling oil inside the machine and kept the counter and surrounding areas nice and clean. It also reduced the smell significantly. This puppy works as advertised.
So what's the bottom line? The Butterball Indoor Turkey Fryer is a great new addition to your kitchen appliances. I know I'll be using it for more than just turkeys. Doughnuts anyone?