I saw these last year on Tanna’s blog, My Kitchen in Half Cups, and I knew I had to try them. I’m amazed it took me this long to get around to it. Why are they “frugal?” Why, because it is a great way to use that sourdough toss off, instead of literally tossing it off. Every time that flour mixture goes down the drain, something inside of me cringes.
I used my white starter, Son of Boris, to make these. Boris Senior passed away last year, but Junior seems to be made of sturdier stuff. I followed Tanna’s recipe for the most part, but when I couldn’t find my sparkling water or Aleppo pepper, I winged it by adding regular water, about 1/2 tsp. of cayenne pepper, and some garlic powder and salt. Like Tanna, I found that one soft ball-sized onion was more than enough for my husband and me. These really benefit from liberal seasoning, so next time I make these I’ll increase all the spices.
The coating was crisp and light, and the rings were best piping hot. We stood at the stove and ate them as they came out of the oil, and were so full that we couldn’t eat dinner. I find that my tolerance for grease has decreased dramatically with age. But, obviously, not my taste for it. Heh. These onion rings have been Yeastpotted! If you want to join me for Frugal Fridays, see here for more info.
Sour Dough Onion Rings
Adapted from Tanna, who adapted it from Nancy Silverton’s Breads from the La Brea Bakery: Recipes for the Connoisseur
To prep the toss off:
Sour dough toss off – 150g. Feed it a scant 1/2 cup all purpose or white whole wheat and 1/2 cup water.
To make the onion rings:
Oil for frying – I used canola, about 4 inches deep
1/4 cup (2 ounces) cold sparkling water or plain water
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 large onion, peeled & sliced about 1/4-inch thick
1 cup white whole wheat flour, or unbleached AP flour, seasoned with:
- 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper (or any spices that you like)
- 1 teaspoon hot hungarian paprika
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
Feed the sour dough toss off and refrigerate. This should be well chilled. The most economical way to do this is probably to save two nights toss off instead of feeding the one night’s toss off. And you’ll have about the right amount.
Cut the onions to the thickness you’d like the rings to be. I separated the rings by twos: leaving each ring with two layers of onions and I was pleased that they were not hard to keep together in the flour, the liquid starter or the oil.
Toss or drag the rings in the flour to coat.
Use a heavy (cast iron works very well) 4 to 6 inch deep pan or deep fat fryer to heat at least one inch deep of oil to 375°F.
Add the 1/4 cup sparkling water to the starter toss off and mix gently. Dip each floured ring into the starter mix and then into the hot oil. Not much flour stuck to the onions but it seemed fine. Do NOT over-crowd the pan – watch the temperature, and if it drops precipitously when you add the onion rings, wait until the temperature comes back up before you add more. You want to keep the oil at 375 F. Turn the rings over in the oil until they are a nice golden brown on both sides. Remove the rings as they turn golden brown with a mesh strainer or slotted spoon; takes maybe 3 minutes to turn golden. Remove to a tray lined with paper towels to drain. Sprinkle with salt to taste while they’re still hot and enjoy! Keep warm in a 220° to 250°F oven.