Deep fried pickles are the perfect snack. They're crispy, savory, and sour enough to keep you paying attention to what you're doing. They're also perfect vehicles for all the flavors of Old Bay. These require little embellishment: some mayo and hot sauce for dipping, and, of course, a cold beer.
- 3 cups pickled cucumbers, sliced 1/8 inch thick
- 1 quart peanut oil
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 cup fine- or medium-ground cornmeal
- 2 1/2 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly ground
With a salad spinner or paper towels, remove excess moisture from pickle slices until they are dry and slightly sticky to the touch. Heat oil in wok or Dutch oven on medium high, to about 375°F. Line a counter or sheet pan with several layers of paper towels for draining fried pickles.
Set up a breading station with two wide containers, bowls, or pie plates. In one, combine panko, cornmeal, and Old Bay; in the other, stir together buttermilk and nutmeg.
Dip five pickle slices in buttermilk and let excess drip away. Lightly toss slices in breading until thoroughly but lightly coated, using forks or chopsticks to keep hands clean.
One by one, drop pickle slices into oil and fry until golden brown, about 1 minute. While pickles are frying, dredge and bread next batch. Remove with a strainer or slotted spoon to paper to drain and cool for five minutes. Serve with mayonnaise and hot sauce.
a wok or Dutch oven for frying