Welcome to our new(ish) column, "Ask the Pastry Chef," by Amy Morris, a pastry sous chef at J&G Steakhouse. Have a question for Amy? Leave it in the comments section.
No matter how bored you are, is it a good idea to deep fry your Easter candy?
We're always wondering what they'll come up with next when it comes to fried food. I thought I had heard it all after deep fried butter.
But have you ever thought of deep frying candy in your Easter basket?
If you haven't, don't worry. We have put it to the test for you in all its sugar coma glory.
Come to think of it, why hasn't anyone tried deep frying all their Easter candy before? Sure, many have done Peeps, but what about the rest?
We found out there may be a reason for that. Some candy did not fry well at all, while others did okay.
First, we began by freezing all of the candy. If you want there to be anything left in the fryer, we knew before we began that room temperature candy is not a good idea.
Second, we poured canola oil into our deep fryer and set it to 375° F. We used a standard General Electric fryer (one for home use), and if the temperature could have been set higher, we would have.
Thirdly, we whipped up a tempura batter, a light airy batter that makes a wonderful crust on deep fried food--and we hoped, good fried Easter candy.
Cadbury Creme Egg (milk chocolate with a soft fondant center) -- Out of all the candy we fried, this egg came out the most colorful and held up better than many of the others. It was able to stay in the deep fryer longer, which resulted in a nice crispy coating, and the candy stayed intact throughout the cooking process.
Upon opening the egg, a soft white and orange cream ran out leaving quite an impression. Not only did it taste good, but we were impressed with how it fared.
One of the things we tried to get more successful results was to coat the frozen candy in flour. After dredging it in the flour and shaking off all excess, we then dipped it into the batter. This seemed to help a little bit.
The Other Good
Russell Stover Coconut Cream and Marshmallow Eggs -- These eggs stood up to the test and somehow surpassed all expectations.
They cooked the longest, so the batter was crispy and had a little bit of color. But, they also held their shape well.
The pretty coating left a nice crunch when you bit into it, and the inside was soft. It wasn't overly gooey, but held its shape and tasted great.
The marshmallow egg stayed intact too, leaving a soft marshmallow center covered in chocolate and fried tempura batter.
Hershey's Cookies and Cream Eggs--These didn't stand much of a chance next to the deep fryer.
It didn't take long before the insides began oozing out. But, rescue it quickly enough, and you have something to salvage. In the end, it tasted okay.
The batter wasn't as crispy as we would like it, but inside it was melted and the cookie pieces gave a nice crunch.
Peeps--This Easter candy I had great hopes for and probably disappointed me because of my high expectations.
After pulling it out of the freezer, I had a feeling it wasn't going to work that well. The inside seemed frozen, but overall it was still soft.
It only took 8-12 seconds in the fryer before you could see strings of marshmallow releasing from the peep. We kept it in there as long as we could before it all melted away.
The batter could have been crispier, but inside it was one gooey marshmallow. It reminded me of a roasted marshmallow over the fire -- without the smoky burnt exterior and instead a fried ring of undercooked tempura batter.
Reese's Peanut Butter Egg--Yes, there is such a thing, and we tried deep frying it. But, out of all the candy we tried, this candy by far gave us the worst results.
It had barely even gotten into the fryer before it began falling apart. With only a few seconds to fry, the batter was not cooked, and the inside of the egg was still frozen.
Never try deep frying this.
Whopper's Robin Eggs--One would think that a hard candy like this would do well in a deep fryer. If you thought that, then join the rest of us who thought so too.
These eggs lasted slightly longer than the Reese's, but not by much. The thin crispy coating cracked pretty quickly, and consequently everything started escaping from inside the egg into the oil.
After managing to save one from total desecration, the inside was hard and unpleasant.
This is another one not meant to be fried. Ever.
Our fried Easter basket left us with astonishing results. In the end, no matter what we did or could have done, most of the candy was not meant to be deep fried.
After eating only a bite of each one, I fell into a sugar comatose. The candy is already sweet enough right out of the package, and deep frying didn't help the situation. Fat covered in more fat was more than my stomach could take.
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There was a lot of time involved in preparing for this task. It was a bit time consuming and, in my opinion, not worth the time invested with the results we got.
Some things just shouldn't be fried, and I believe, we have found some foods to add to that list.