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Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - DFen911 - 08-25-2007

Ok it's becoming an obsession. This weekend I am trying both the recipes suggested in my post about my fried chicken disaster.

So do you all use an iron skillet, electric skillet or a deep fryer?

I'm looking into deep fryers and have been told that I want on with the heating element in the bottom verses built into the unit.

What are your preferences? I would love to make onion rings, fresh fries, even corn dogs.

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - pjcooks - 08-25-2007

I use a fryer. I like the ability to control the temp with a thermostat. I've seen too many stove (and house) fires caused from overheated oil. (ex husband is fire chief)

I'm not certain that gives you the best flavor, but your house will remain intact

My fryer has the heating element on the bottom and I'm happy with it. I've noticed a big improvement since I started using peanut oil. Higher smoke point, cleaner flavor.

Any help?


Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - bbally - 08-25-2007

12 inch round deep dutch oven for me. And if you want to change it up a bit, purchase rice oil. 510 F smoke point, stable for months and months and very very healthy!

I use lodge dutch ovens

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - Mare749 - 08-25-2007

I use a huge cast iron skillet (Lodge brand) that I have had forever for fried chicken. Also use a De Longhi deep fryer (the big one) for french fries, onion rings, cheese sticks, egg rolls, breaded vegetables, all the stuff we're trying not to eat these days. It works really well and is safe and easy to use and clean, just wish we didn't like it so much.


Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - labradors - 08-25-2007

Something else that works well for deep frying (though I'm not sure how it would do for full pieces of chicken) is a wok - especially a real wok on a gas stove. I use that for tempura all the time.

When I say "real wok," I mean a plain, basic, simple wok that is not stainless steel, non-stick, nor any of the other phonies marketed toward Americans who don't know any better. For example, take a look at the prices of the stainless or Calphalon woks at Williams-Sonoma. In contrast, the 16" wok that I bought from a restaurant-supply store in Orlando, FL, was only $9.95, and works beautifully.

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - HomeCulinarian - 08-25-2007

I cast a vote for electric skillet for frying chicken.

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - bjcotton - 08-25-2007

I fry chicken in a cast iron deep frying pan. I use an electric skillet for various things, but not chicken. I have an electric deep fryer that comes apart and the heating element and control are the only things that cannot be put in the dishwasher. They now have some types that have a drain for the oil, mine doesn't, wish it did. Other than that I like it.

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - Roxanne 21 - 08-26-2007

I love my electric fry pan for frying chicken--the temp is controlled beautifully and makes for even cooking (for me because I'm frying challenged

All other things are done in my wok. I don't have a cast iron dutch oven so can't comment on that but it sounds like a winner option, too.

I also have a deep fryer--the element is on the bottom but that unit can be removed for easier cleaning. I think I have used it twice--not happy with it because it uses too much oil and I hate leaving the unused oil sitting for any length of time. Made the best spring rolls ever, though. Went back to my wok for those.

Denise--let us know how it goes, please. When you make your choice of product I am curious to know why you chose what you did (???). HAVE FUN!!!!!!!

Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - pjcooks - 08-26-2007

I like the electric skillet idea. And rice oil is new to me, I'll check it out.

I strain my peanut oil and store it in the fridge. The bigger one does take a lot of oil, but the small one I bought only takes 2 c, I believe. It's a pain, but it's my insurance policy- when I drag it out, it's for something I really want to make.


Re: Cast Iron, Fryer or Skillet? - cjs - 08-26-2007

another vote for cast iron, except when making the 'off-the-wall' chicken mentioned earlier...

PJ, that's what I do also, strain the oil and keep in the fridge for a few times.

Good luck, Denise!!! And as Rox says, have fun! (too bad this quest isn't like the time we decided to find our favorite Margaritas.....after the second or third, man, they were all great!! )