You may have noticed that we don’t share a ton of fried recipes here. That’s because dealing with a vat of hot oil isn’t something we’re always up to handling.
However, there are certain fried foods we’re always game to make because they’re so delicious they’re well worth the effort. Case in point? The classic Roman street snack known as suppli, the fries for this chorizo and egg sandwich, and this Spiced Sugar Fresh Pear Fritters Recipe.
Spiced Sugar Fresh Pear Fritters Recipe
And our favorite time of year to pull these fritters out is the holiday season because they’re filled with ginger and spice and all things nice! They’re as perfect as a holiday meal dessert as they are during a lazy weekend brunch or even as an impromptu afternoon snack.
What Is A Fritter?
Every time we make this recipe we get the same question: “Wait. Is a fritter the same thing as a donut?” They’re closely related but technically different.
A donut (or doughnut) is fried dough while a fritter is a battered fried food. In other words, a fritter is when you take an ingredient (like corn, zucchini, apples, or pears) and coat it in a batter, which really acts as a tasty binder, while the dough is the star when it comes to a donut.
Think of it this way: an apple donut would be dough with some apple in it while an apple fritter is classically a lot of apple that has a bit of batter or dough. Got it? Good!
Equipment For Deep Frying Fritters
A major key to making frying less strenuous is to have all the proper equipment on hand. Here are key pieces of equipment we pull out whenever we’re deep frying and especially when we make this fritters recipe:
It could be a cast iron or a Dutch oven but choose a heavy bottomed pot as it’s going to keep the oil temperature steady, which means more even cooking and all in all a safer experience.
Really any sort of metal utensil that’s slotted that you can use for removing fritters from oil will do here.
Or a candy thermometer — keep a thermometer clipped to the pot so you can see if the temperature fluctuates while you’re frying.
Any of these can be used for coating the fritters in ginger sugar.
Really just for draining the fritters once they’re fried.
Tips To Make These Fresh Pear Fritters
As far as fried food recipes, this one is rather simple —promise! Once you make this a couple of times you’ll get in a rhythm and be able to pull them together for a breakfast treat before you’ve even finished your first cup of coffee. However, here are a few fritters frying tips so they’re always a success:
Use Firm Ripe Pears
Make sure the pears aren’t too hard or too ripe but just right as they’ll then have great flavor and hold together when fried. You want the pear to give way when you press the flesh near the stem but for it to not be soft on the rest of the fruit.
Heat Oil To 350°F But Fry At 325°F
You want to heat the oil to 350 degrees but once you add the fritters the oil will drop in temperature and that’s okay. Try to keep the oil around 325 degrees the whole time you are frying as that is the magic temperature to ensure they’re golden brown and perfectly cooked.
Safely Discard Of The Oil
Finally, just a reminder that you want to throw dirty oil out in the trash (or even recycle it if that’s an option where you live!) after you’re done with it. Just promise you’ll never ever put it down the sink as that’s bad for your pipes and for the environment.
Variations On Fresh Pear Fritters
As you’re aware fritters are a big family of recipes so you may want to switch these up to accommodate your taste. If pears aren’t your thing, you can certainly make these with apples or persimmons instead. Also, feel free to mix up the spices and do cinnamon sugar or leave out the ginger or even put citrus zest into the sugar should you so desire.
Finally, if you want these to be even lighter, feel free to whip the egg whites to a medium peak and then fold them into the batter or even use ginger beer instead of the milk for an extra ginger-y bite and even more airiness.
Spiced Sugar Fresh Pear Fritters Recipe
- vegetable oil
For The Pear Fritter Batter:
- 2 1/2 cups small diced pear (about 3 medium pears)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar divided
- 1 medium lemon zested and juiced
- 2 large egg whites
- 1 large egg
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
For The Ginger Sugar:
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- Prepare The Oil For Deep Frying: Fill a large heavy-bottomed pot (a cast iron pot or Dutch oven works great) with 2 inches of vegetable oil, attach a deep frying or candy thermometer to the side of the pot, and warm the oil over medium-high heat until it’s at 350°F. (Keep an eye on the oil so it doesn’t overheat or splatter — it will probably take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes to heat depending on the type of pot and type of stove you’re using.)TIP: You can also use vegetable shortening insteead of vegetable oil.
- Make The Pear Fritter Batter: Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, combine the 2 1/2 cups of diced pear with 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar, all the lemon juice, and lemon zest and stir to coat the pear pieces in the sugar. Set aside to macerate until the pears let off some juice, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the 2 egg whites, the 1 whole egg, all the milk, and the 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract in a large bowl and whisk until the eggs are broken up and everything is smooth. In another large bowl, whisk together the 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour with the 2 teaspoons of baking powder, the 2 teaspoons of kosher salt, the 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon of the ground ginger. Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture until just combined. Stir in the macerated pear mixture (juice and all!) until everything is evenly combined.
- Make The Ginger Sugar: Mix together the remaining 1 cup granulated sugar with the remaining ground ginger and whisk to evenly combine. Place the ginger sugar on a shallow large dish or in a paper bag. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a paper towel and get a slotted spoon out. TIP: Ginger sugar can be made up to one week ahead. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.
- Fry The Fritters: Once the oil is hot, begin frying the pear fritters. Carefully drop the pear fritter batter by 1 or 2 tablespoonfuls (a #30 cookie scoop works great for this) into the hot oil.You should be able to fry anywhere from 4 to 8 fritters at once — just make sure there’s enough room in the pot so the fritters don’t crowd the pot and the oil temperature doesn’t drop below 325°F).Fry the fritters until they’re brown and cooked through, about 6 to 8 minutes (adjust the heat as needed to make sure the oil temperature stays at 325°F). Serve The Pear Fritters: Remove the cooked fritters with a slotted spoon and drain on the paper towel-lined baking sheet. Place the drained and still warm fritters into the sugar mixture and toss them to coat them in the ginger sugar. Serve warm. Repeat with the remaining batter. TIP: Fried pear fritters can be held in a low (about 200°F) oven until ready to serve. Or you can fry them a day in advance and warm them in a low oven before serving.