Alex Brown and Evan George
Leeks aren’t onions, but they’re in the onion family. Their tough-ass stocks are great for braising. After playing with leek rings, we’ve decided they’re great for frying too. Usually when we cook with much of the green part (further up the stock) we opt for methods that will help wilt it, but here we tried to use most of the leek to get a variety of ring shapes.
The airy openness of such tall rings is awesome; it leaves more room for the crumbs and batter to play, and makes for large bites without risking that hot onion will shoot out of its fried exterior.
1 cup tempura batter
12 ounces India Pale Ale
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 cups frying oil (such as Canola), heated to about 435°F in a pan or deep-fryer
1) Cut your leeks into 5- or 6-inch lengths, discarding the green tips. Chop the tubes into 1-inch pieces. Separate the outmost rings from the inner layers. (Save the innermost, very small rings for other uses, such as sauces or stock.) If possible, try to leave rings that are 2 layers thick for extra crunch.2) Combine batter with as much beer as necessary to achieve a goopy pancake batter feel.3) Batter the outer rings and fry.4) Blot on paper towels to remove excess oil. Serve rings with dipping sauces. We recommend harissa ketchup, horseradish veganaise and barbecue sauce.