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@Joe thank you for answering my earlier question! After an epic fail trying to deep fry beer battered zucchini (ended up with a beer battered pancake-like blob with some zucchini slices on top) I have a follow up question:

When deep frying vegetables that are beer battered instead of just covered with an egg/milk and breadcrumb mixture, should you put them in to the deep fryer with the basket already submerged in the oil? Will this prevent the aforementioned "beer battered pancake" at the bottom of the basket? Also, does this method make any significant difference if used deep frying vegetables in an egg/milk and breadcrumb mixture (let me know if clarification is needed - sounds weird)?

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As SAJ14SAJ mentioned, when doing a batter coating, you need to hold it in the oil for a second before letting it drop, so that it'll crust up before it touches the basket.

However, you also mentioned 'with some zucchini slices on top', I suspect that the batter came off entirely.

Breading for frying is a bit strange, as you need to make sure that you don't put something wet on top of something else wet (or dry on dry), and no layer too thick.

So, in the case of the zucchini, you need to make sure that the pieces are very dry before putting them in the batter ... if they're freshly sliced, they'll extrude liquid, and so you may need to coat them in flour or starch, shake them off, and then put them in the batter.

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got it - that is exactly what happened. I think the combination of putting them in the basket before dropping it in oil as well as not coating/drying the zucchini slices caused the entire bottom of the basket to become covered in a layer of beer batter (which also stuck to the bottom) topped by some very nice pieces of fresh zucchini hah. Thanks for your help all! –  Brando Apr 15 '13 at 13:10
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Yes, with any fairly liquid batter on a deep fried item, you want to slowly lower the food into the oil; if you have a fryer with a basket, it is better that the basket is already down, so that the batter "feet" don't wrap around the wire and bind the items to the basket. You want to carefully drop the items separately, as well, so they don't stick to each other.

I am not quite sure what you are referring to as the "beer battered pancake" exactly, but I hope this answers your question.

This is of course much less of an issue with dry breadings like breadcrumb coatings. Since the crumbs form a non-sticky barrier, the items are far less likely to stick to the basket or each other; for convenience you can lower them with the basket if you choose.

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