Around the House: How to Fry Latkes and Doughnuts without Making a Mess
By Yehudit Garmaise
Homemade latkes and doughnuts create the smells and tastes of Chanukah, but frying any foods can make messes not only of kitchens but of cooks, as well.
First, cooks who fry any food should wear aprons to protect their clothing from oil splatters, which rarely come out in the wash.
Similarly, latke-makers can prevent having to launch massive clean-ups after dinner by covering stoves with silicone baking mats or aluminum foil before heating the oil.
In Chanukah, when we eat many fried foods, deep fryers may be good investments. Deep fryers, which have lids, prevent messy oil splatters. In addition, deep fryers enclose baskets that allow cooks to lower and raise the food they are frying into and out of hot oil.
Cooks who want to stick with their frying pans may want to buy a “splatter screen,” a metal or plastic mesh screen that covers pans as food fry.
Another tip to help cooks to drain excess oil and keep their kitchens clean is to use slotted spoons or tongs to lift food out of the oil and onto a plate with a paper towel that could further absorb the extra oil.
Once cooks are finished frying, they should take care not to pour the cooking oil down the drain, which will only clog pipes.
The best way to dispose of cooking oil is to pour it into sealable containers, like an empty milk or juice container, and throw it away in the trash.