From the Thermomix to the Pie Maker we really love our appliances. There's another kitchen tool we're in love with that makes eating healthy so much easier. The beloved air fryer lets you make fried foods without all the oil and it can be used for so much more. Here are some of the most incredible things you can make in one, from mains to sides to desserts and snacks.
An air fryer is a kitchen appliance that cooks by circulating hot air around the food using the convection mechanism
The technology circulates the air to temperatures up to 200 degrees, and the cooking chamber keeps the food close to the heating elements, allowing your food to be cooked in 10 to 20 minutes.
The air fryer is extremely easy to use, and requires little to no maintenance. In addition to making the process of frying easier, it also results in healthier and tastier results.
Learn more about Air Fryers.
Air fryers are renowned for replicating the crisp texture of deep-frying with a fraction of the oil. This amped-up benchtop convection oven works by pushing hot air around food. The rapid circulation of air is what helps to make food crisp, but with much less oil. For example, air-fried hot chips provide 4–6g fat compared to 17g for the deep-fried equivalent. There are many sizes of air fryers; however, in the Air Fryer Cookbook we've used a popular well-priced and mid-sized 5.3-litre model. If you have a larger appliance, you will be able to cook larger amounts of food, while for a smaller one, you will need to decrease the quantities accordingly.
Before starting any recipe, read the manufacturer's instructions for your appliance first. The machine can get hot, so allow sufficient space on the benchtop around it. Once the basket is pulled out of the appliance, treat it like opening an oven door – it will be hot! Take care when adding and removing items from the air-fryer basket.
HACKS & TIPS
Avoid baking paper as a cover for food as it will catch fire. Instead, use aluminium foil, which may need to be weighed down with metal spoons. Seeds and loose seasonings should also be avoided, as these will fly around the appliance and burn. To assist with cleaning, line under the basket with baking paper or foil to catch any oil drippings. To ensure even browning, turn food halfway through cooking time. To prevent overbrowning, ensure there is sufficient distance between the top of the food and the element, or cover the food with foil.
Use it sparingly or it will burn. Aim for 1-2 tablespoons (olive or canola oil). No additional oil is required for naturally fattier foods like sausages or meatballs. For battered, floured and crumbed recipes, spray the basket and the food lightly with oil. Some oil is required to assist with browning.
To convert a deep-fried, baking or roasting recipe for the air fryer, reduce the cooking temperature by 20°C.
Use the air fryer to return pizza, crumbed items and pastry to their former crisp glory. Five minutes at 180°C is all that's needed to reheat a slice of pizza!
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