Warm strawberry fritters for your sweetheart

By Jim Bailey

The French have been making strawberry fritters for centuries. In fact, Menon, in his 1793 French cookbook titled The French Family Cook, gives us this strawberry fritter recipe for the first time in print that I am able to find.Yankee Chef logo

“Make a paste with some flour, a spoonful of brandy, half a glass of white wine, the whites of two eggs beat and green lemon shred fine. Mix it well, neither too thick nor too thin. It should rope in falling from a spoon. Dip some large strawberries in to it, fry them and glaze them with a salamander.” This is also the earliest reference to a salamander I found as well.

Fresh Whole Strawberry Fritters with Caramel Sauce

Whole strawberry fritters for Valentine's Day.

Whole strawberry fritters for Valentine’s Day.

This is a tasty treat for you guys out there to make on Valentine’s Day. Simple, sweet and warming to the heart.

1 quart vegetable oil
2 eggs, well beaten
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk
3/4 cup flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pint whole strawberries, hulled
Prepared caramel sauce

Preheat oil in a deep, heavy pot until it reaches 350-degrees F. Use a clip-on thermometer to check the temperature, and use your deep fryer according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Combine eggs, milk, flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon and mix well. Stir in strawberries, a few at a time, being careful not to mash them. With two forks, remove a strawberry at a time and gently ease them into the hot oil.

Cook only two to three at a time to cook evenly, remembering to turn them over, and to keep the temperature of the oil hot. If the temperature drops, the strawberries will be cooking in the oil longer, therefore soaking up more oil.
Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the batter has evenly turned a medium brown in color. Remove to a paper towel-lined platter or rack to drain. Continue with remainder of strawberries. To serve, pour warmed caramel sauce over the top.

Yankee Chef book coverSchiffer Books of Pennsylvania is releasing Jim Bailey’s new book The Yankee Chef: Feel Good Food for Every Kitchen. It contains more than 550 traditional New England comfort-food recipes tweaked for today’s palates with hundreds of kitchen tips and food facts. The hardback book is 312 pages and contains 200 color images. Its ISBN is 978-0-7643-4191-5 and the cost is $34.99. The book can be ordered through Misty Valley Books, 802-875-3400.

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Filed Under: Community and Arts LifeThe Yankee Chef

About the Author: Jim Bailey is a third generation Yankee Chef, New England food historian and newspaper columnist. His first cookbook, simply titled The Yankee Chef, has been published. He welcomes all feedback, questions or comments at theyankeechef@aol.com.

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