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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Oil-less Turkey Frying? - Is That Possible And Does It Taste Good?

Not Quite Warm Enough To Travel!
    A while back, a friend told me that there was nothing more tasty than a deep fried turkey. That is a pretty big claim. I mean, I am a big fan of Thanksgiving and Turkey is great to have around at other times during the year. I especially like the leftovers as I make (what I believe to be) the world's best turkey salad out of the leftovers. I am always a bit wary of deep frying anything. There are the health concerns, of course, but the RV environment really isn't conducive to deep frying. The clean-up alone gives me nightmares! That being said, you could still take a propane-fired turkey deep-fryer with you. And the couple of gallons of fry oil you'd need. Well, maybe you! I just don't have that space. What if there was a way to "fry" without oil?

While walking through a big box home improvement store a few weeks ago, I saw a deal I just couldn't refuse. It was an (alleged) oil-less turkey fryer. It even had the well known "ButterBall" name and logo on it. Originally it was $119.95, but had been reduced to $24.00. I am usually wary of buying cooking and kitchen products that are "one trick ponies."

 Hmmm, according to the box, it would cook other foods as well. Ham, vegetables, etc. Why not give it a try? Based on the weight of the box (Heavy!!) the build quality should be pretty decent. So, I bought one and brought it home.

The supermarket I shop at (a lot!) has a promotion each year where you can get a free turkey or ham or a few other items when your purchases total more than a set amount. Since I do lots of shopping I usually end up with two items. One of them is always going to be a turkey. (The other, a ham!) So I had a couple of them in the deep freezer. I couldn't wait to try this thing out. I retrieved the frozen turkey and began the thawing process. For someone without patience, this takes a long time. A really long time. A few DAYS later after defrosting in the refrigerator I was ready to prep the bird.


Pull everything out of the inside and rinse well. I know, to get the best results I should soak the turkey in a brine overnight, but I had already waited days! I wanted to try it out so I started pre-heating the oil-less fryer, washed the turkey well, dried it off and spiced it up. Pushed the supplied thermometer into the thickest section I could find and then it goes on a stand that fastens to a round wire rack that, in turn, fits in the bottom of the basket. Then that basket is lifted with the supplied heavy duty handle and placed inside the oil-less fryer and the vented glass lid placed over it.


The basket is funnel shaped at its bottom as is the bottom of the oil-less fryer. A large dripping pot with handle sits under the outlet and really does catch all the fat and grease that drips out. The instruction manual says 10 minutes per 1 pound of bird (up to 19 lbs.), so this one was 150 minutes. I checked with a non-contact thermometer, the oil-less fryer gets up to around 450 degrees Fahrenheit when it's ready to cook. A simple orange light shuts off when it's ready to go. It draws about 15 Amps (120V) when the heating element is on.


150 minutes later I had a REALLY crispy (on the outside) succulent, moist and perfectly cooked turkey with VERY little mess. I used the supplied handle to lift everything out of the oil-less fryer and let it set (per the directions) for 15 minutes. Then I disassembled the turkey. Wow! It was perfect. Since I STILL haven't eaten a piece of deep fried turkey, I may be missing out on something..... but this tasted really good, I will be trying it with some other recipes. I will DEFINITELY use the wood chip smoker box next time...will really increase the flavor. And I will try and have the patience to brine the bird before-hand. Maybe...

While this device does take up a LOT of valuable space, if you have a lot of people to feed, or you want leftover recipes for a long while, it makes sense to have. If it works as well for other foods....bonus! I may just take it along for special occasions.

Be Seeing You...Down The Road,

Rich "The Wanderman"
www.thewanderman.com

[Editor: Check out several oil-less turkey fryers at Amazon.]

8 comments:

  1. We've been using the Charbroil "Big Easy" oil-less turkey fryer for the last year and a half with great success.

    Turkey, chicken, ribs and roasts come out perfectly done and always moist.

    Although it does take a lot of storage space, it has a permanent home in our RV.

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    Replies
    1. Anon,
      Ribs! Hmmm... Never thought of that. Next, I was going to try a large roast. Perhaps...ribs instead :)

      Rich "The Wanderman"

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  2. I will have to look for one of these. We love turkey, but our RV oven is way too small to even fit a small chicken. Thanks for posting this.

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    Replies
    1. Alice,
      Since it can be used for almost anything as well as turkey, it would make a great substitute oven.

      Great idea!

      Rich "The Wanderman"

      Delete
  3. Do you know what the amp draw is on these type fryers? Thanks.

    Brian

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brian,
      Ummmm...the amp draw is listed in the article:

      "It draws about 15 Amps (120V) when the heating element is on."

      Rich "The Wanderman"

      Delete
    2. Thanks Rich. I read it and totally missed that. Too early and not enough coffee.

      Brian

      Delete
    3. Brian,
      No Worries.. As a fellow non-morning, coffee "aficionado" I understand completely!

      Rich "The Wanderman"

      Delete

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