County Fair Tea: Onion Rings

Everyone loves a blooming onion, a whole onion which has been batter dipped and deep fried. Not quite right for a tea though. Instead add onion rings to top off your salad. Hold the onion rings in a low oven until ready to plate the salad. Here's a good recipe for onion rings:

large sweet onions, separated into rings
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk
several dashes hot sauce
cooking oil for frying

Heat cooking oil in a deep pan several inches thick. Temperature should be 375 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl; in a measuring cup, whisk milk and egg and hot sauce. Add liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients. Combine but don't over mix. A few lumps are okay.

Dunk the onion rings into the batter and then carefully put them into the oil, a few at a time. Flip them as they begin to turn brown to cook both sides. They are finished when both sides are golden brown. Remove them to a paper towel to drain and sprinkle with salt. Allow the oil to come back up to temperature before adding the next batch. Oil that isn't hot enough will give you soggy onion rings.