Noshing with the Nolands
Sometimes, all we need is an order of mozzarella sticks to help get us through the day. Or maybe it’s french fries that do the trick… or chicken tenders, or even onion rings. Whatever it is, there are often situations in life that call for a food to be submerged into incredibly hot oil and fried to crisp, golden brown perfection, giving us the ideal indulgence that’ll help us nurse the hangover we’re suffering from, a breakup that won’t heal, or even help us overcome a child’s stubborn eating habits.
While the appeal of fried food is nearly universal, this isn’t an essay to try to get you to eat more fried foods. Fried foods aren’t the best thing for our health, and while they definitely help in certain situations, it’s not recommended that you consume them on a daily basis.
Now, with that out of the way, let’s delve a little further into the wonderful world of fried food.
Fried foods have been around for ages, and it is believed that frying foods became a common cooking practice that started in the first century C.E. in many cultures around the Mediterranean. The Japanese version of fried foods, tempura, was introduced to their cooking in the 16th century, and while its exact history is still somewhat debated, it’s agreed by many that the french fry became all the buzz in Belgium and France in the 1830s.
As you can see, fried foods have been delicacies in our world for a long time, but that doesn’t mean we have to keep thinking about them the same way. Yes, fried mozzarella sticks are good, but jalapeño peppers stuffed with cheese, breaded, and fried, are even better. We often think of fried foods as being the result of a single ingredient, but what if we started thinking of them as dishes made from another dish, like fried macaroni and cheese bites? Even better, who said that fried foods had to be savory? From Mars bars and chocolate chip cookie dough to ice cream, that greasy, crunchy goodness that comes from frying foods tastes good with just about anything — even sweets.
Fried foods aren’t about to become a part of our regular eating habits, but when the craving (or situation) strikes, just know that there’s more to fried foods out there than just french fries. From avocado sticks to tacos, these are recipes featuring 13 things that you may not have known you could fry.
Anne Dolce is the Cook editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @anniecdolce