Hush! Puppeh

ShilohbfLONot really. OUR puppeh, Shiloh, is pretty darned good about not being too barky – and we’ve trained him to go to his blanket while we’re at the table. He does get a treat after we’re done if he’s been good – but that’s usually an ice cube or a toofy – not a hush puppy.

He doesn’t get people food, and besides, these crispy little balls o’ corn goodness have onion (tho’ not enough, in Rich’s opinion) – which is not good for a puppeh.

FryerbfLOSee, I got this wicked cool, small deep fryer for an early Christmas present (remember the Salt & Pepper Calamari?), and I was itchin’ to try it out again.

I also happen to love me a good hush puppy.

CornmealButtermilkbfLOYou may recall that I made some baked hush puppies a while back, and they were… nice. Better for one, certainly, than fried, but no where near as nice as when they are fried to a golden brown in hot oil.

Besides, I used canola oil, and, did I mention I had this really cool new small deep fryer? By the way, all thanks to the nice folk at Cuisinart for making a nice little deep fryer AND providing this recipe.

•1 cup cornmeal (yellow or white)
•1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp buttermilk
•3 tbsp flour
•1 tbsp sugar
•1 tsp baking powder
•1/2 tsp baking soda
•1/2 tsp salt
•1/8 tsp pepper
•2 tbsp finely minced yellow or white onion – I used 1 tsp dried onion and 1/2 tsp dried shallot soaked with 1/2 tsp water for 15 minutes
BatterbfLO•1 large egg, lightly beaten
•Canola or peanut oil

Stir the cornmeal and buttermilk together and set aside to rest for 15 minutes.

Stir in the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, salt and pepper, then the egg and onion (or onion and shallot mixture).

HushPuppiesFryingBasketbfLOStir together until the batter is smooth – perhaps because I had used dried onion, mine was quite pasty, so I added 2 tablespoons of water to make a (really) thick batter.

Now for the frying.

Add oil to the maximum level in your fryer (which for mine takes a full 32 ounces), set the dial to 375º, and let it come up to temperature.

HushPuppiesRack02bfLOLower the basket into the oil and drop in the batter by tablespoons – don’t crowd them. Since this is a small fryer, I did four at a time. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes, turning when they begin to float to brown evenly. Ermmm, you may need to nudge them away from the basket to set them free to float.

When lovely and brown, raise the basket and allow to drain, then pluck the puppies out to drain quickly on paper towels before serving or (more likely) popping onto a rack in a 200º oven to keep warm while you finish the frying.

SaucesLeanLeftbfLOThe nice folk at Cuisinart said this recipe would yield 20 hush puppies, I ended up with 16 – but mebbe I was a bit too generous with my tablespoons.

We had these for lunch with the last of that really good cole slaw and a troika of dipping sauces I had in the fridge: cocktail, horseradish-less, and tartar. All was good – tho’ Rich felt I could’ve gone a lot heavier on the onion, and I am inclined to agree.

Next time.

Meanwhile, Shiloh enjoyed his toofy…

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