Fried Oreos (Sandwich Cookies)
This past chanukah was the first year I was so fry-happy. I dislike frying for many reasons, namely the smell, the mess, the monitoring, and health reasons. But this year I pushed myself to fry and even begain looking for culprits. There's a segula (a good omen) related to frying and the good blessings it brings during Chanukah. I was convinced. I made the ubiquitous latkes and sfganiyot (specifically sfenj- a Moroccan variety sourced from my grandmother.) I fried some cheesy jalapeno poppers (here), I turned fries into poutine (sharing soon), and then I picked on the humble sandwich cookie and fried it, too.
I was amazed at how quickly this recipe came together. I made it during dinner while guests were lingering around the table after having latkes and other highly caloric foods, the kind that befits a true celebration. All it takes is a whisk of the batter, hot oil, dropping coated oreos and watching them turn into intoxicatingly sweet puffy clouds of yuminess.
I had first heard of fried oreos on a short summer trip to San Fran. The lady on the red tour bus was talking about how this small stand in Pier 39 makes the "best fried oreos--ever." My inital reaction was slight repulsion at a fried cookie, but I was intrigued nonetheless. Fast forward to my oil-filled Chanukah, and I knew that if ever I was to attempt it, it would be now. So I tried it and I was surprised at how much I loved it. It very much reminds me of a doughnut hole, in taste and texture. The cookie melts in the middle and the dough puffs up to create a comfortable cushion around the center. This is a perfect alternative to yeasted doughnuts, since it comes together effortlessly, yet tastes delicious, albeit toothachingly sweet.
adapted from Emeril Lagasse
3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup milk
oil, for frying
12-15 sandwich cookies, such as Oreos
Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Whisk in the egg and milk. Fill a skillet with enough oil to coat 1/3 of the pan and heat on medium heat until a thermometer reads 350F. If you do not have a thermometer, drop a piece of carrot into the pan, the oil is hot wnough when the carrot floats to the surface.
Coat each sandwich cookie in the batter and drop into the oil. Fry on each side until golden brown and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve immediately.