Frying meat is arguably one of the quickest, easiest solutions to a quick dinner. However, while frying meat looks easy, getting the perfect result with your frying is a bit trickier. From fried chicken drumsticks to everyone’s favourite stir-fry dishes, let’s take a look at some helpful tips from experts, which reveal the secret to perfectly fried meat!
The first rule to prepping your meat for frying is to make sure the meat is dried, otherwise the surface of the cut will boil rather than sear. Avoid crowding the pan with too much meat, this helps avoid a loss of heat from the pan, and allows the meat to cook. As the meat cooks, the connective tissue within the meat begins to shrink. As a practice, it is best to cut away, or cut through visible fat membranes to stop the meat from bending and twisting. While some chefs prefer butter for their pans, which is great for gauging temperature, as well as adding flavor, others prefer oil, which is not affected by high temperatures. Mixing butter and olive oil is known to be a flavourful mix, but does not work well with high temperatures. Experiment, and pick the best approach for yourself.
In the Frying Pan
Caramelise the surface of the meat, so that it comes loose from the frying surface all on its own. If you try lifting it, and it’s still stuck to the pan, wait for a little while longer. Once it comes away, caramelisation will have occurred. While the distribution of heat is more even when using lots of fat, it is important to be sure not to boil the meat in butter or oil. Unless the meat has been breaded, you don't need to worry about it absorbing the fat. With fried chicken legs, and other such meats, be sure not to flip the meat too often, to prevent the pan’s surface from having to reheat over again. A great way to know when your meat is ready to flip, is to watch for when the juices begin oozing out of the top. Frying the second side never takes as long as the first.
Out of the Frying Pan
Why do all the work yourself? It’s a good idea to let residual heat finish off the task. Use a warm oven for the job and check with a thermometer for thicker cuts. For the thinner ones, fry in a pan and then place the meat, pan included, in a moderately heated oven, and be sure to keep check with your thermometer. For a perfectly even internal temperature, let the meat rest for 10-15 minutes. This allows the juices and heat to be evenly spread, and destresses the meat from the high cooking temperatures.
Frying up a storm has never been easier! So, get out your frying pans, and make some magic happen!