Beer batter is great for encasing all sorts of fryables in a light, crispy coat that browns up beautifully, but the one thing that beer batter is usually lacking is any sort of beery flavor. This is most likely the case due to the fact that the majority of beer batter recipes don't specify anything more than ounces of beer, with no accounting for style or flavor profile.
These Arrogant Bastard Onion Rings from The Craft of Stone Brewing Co. solve that problem by being quite specific about the beer involved—in this case their big, boozy Arrogant Bastard Ale.
If you're at all familiar with the indelible flavors of Arrogant Bastard, you'll see that not even hulking slices of onion and a batter full of smokey chipotle and paprika can overcome the beery notes in this batter. You could serve these tempura-light onion rings with a side of barbecue sauce, but if you're a Stone fan, all you'll really need is the rest of that sixer of Arrogant Bastard.
Reprinted with permission from The Craft of Stone Brewing Co. by Greg Koch and Steve Wagner with Randy Clemens. Copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.
- Yield:6 to 8
- Active time: 30 minutes
- Total time:30 minutes
- 4 very large yellow onions
- 1 recipe Arrogant Bastard Ale Batter (recipe follows)
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Kosher salt
- Arrogant Bastard Ale Batter
- 2 cups (16 fluid ounces) cold Arrogant Bastard Ale
- Heaping 3/4 teaspoon Cajun spice blend
- Heaping 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground dried chipotle chiles
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
- About 1 cup (4 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
Arrogant Bastard Ale Batter: Pour the Arrogant Bastard Ale into a high-sided narrow container. Stir in the Cajun spice blend, salt, chipotle, smoked paprika, and garlic. Sift the flour and baking powder together, then add them to the beer mixture slowly, whisking well until they’re evenly and thoroughly incorporated. You may need a bit more or less flour to reach the ideal consistency for a tempura-style batter. It should be just thick enough to coat whatever you’re frying.
Cut off the ends of each onion, cut in half crosswise (around the equator), and remove the papery skin and thin outer membrane. Soak in a bowl of ice water for 10 minutes.
Drain the onions, separate the concentric rings, and spread them on a kitchen towel to dry.
Preheat the oven to 200°F. Prepare a deep fryer, filling it with oil to the manufacturer’s suggested fill level. Alternately, use a wide cast-iron or other heavy-duty pan that’s at least 4 inches deep, pouring in oil to a depth of 2 to 3 inches, and no more than halfway up the side of the pan. Heat the oil to 360°F.
Dunk the onion rings in the batter and fry in batches until crispy and deep reddish brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan, as this will lower the temperature of the oil significantly and result in soggy onion rings. Transfer cooked onion rings to a wire rack set over a baking sheet (or directly on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet). Season with a sprinkling of salt and keep them in the oven until the entire batch has been fried.
Serve hot, with a side of BBQ sauce for dipping. (No ketchup!)