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"The height of deep-fried achievement"
January 9, 2014 12:13 PM   Subscribe

“It’s a cornmeal dough,” McDaniel says. “You can’t tell me that somebody in the South didn’t try frying that before the 20th century.”

If you're thinking of frying some hushpuppies up yourself, there is no lack of recipes out there on the interwebs. The usual suspects of Paula Deen and Southern Living have their own recipes, and you can also take a whack at copying Long John Silvers' own hushpuppies. There's even Quinoa Hush Puppies, but if you're really wanting to stay healthy, you're probably on the wrong post.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI (90 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite

 
Goddamned right, hushpuppies! Throw in some fried oysters and pulled pork, for the Carolina Trifecta
posted by C.A.S. at 12:18 PM on January 9 [13 favorites]


I haven't been to a Long John Silver's in decades, but you're making me want to conjure one right about now.
posted by mudpuppie at 12:21 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]


I've had two fry parties in the past year where I thought we'd covered most of the important fried food bases, but we haven't done hush puppies! This post is inspiring a yearning in me once again for a hot bucket of oil and friends over for lunch.
We could watch Hannibal.
posted by carsonb at 12:23 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


GUYS CAN I SHARE SOMETHING WITH YOU? IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT.

If you go to make hushpuppies yourself, add some actual whole kernel sweet corn to the batter. Just fold it right in and fry those suckers up. IT'S AMAZING.

Now we're getting off topic, but if any of you DIY ice cream, make honey flavored ice cream and add whole kernel sweet corn into it. omg. corn.
posted by phunniemee at 12:32 PM on January 9 [10 favorites]


Hushpuppies, YEAH!

But:

The only improvements that can be made to its soothing near-blandness and its harmonious textural balance are a touch of tartar sauce and splashes of vinegary Crystal Hot Sauce.

Fuck you, fuckball!

The best and most properest way to each a hush puppy is to first eat your plate of pulled pork and cole slaw, and then bite off the end of a puppy, and then you sort of grooble the exposed bit of interior around in the little bits of barbecue sauce/juice and slaw dressing that are still on the plate.

add some actual whole kernel sweet corn to the batter

That there is a corn fritter, not a hush puppy.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 12:34 PM on January 9 [26 favorites]


My grandma used to make the best hush puppies--served up with fried catfish--but she cooks less and less now. Those--plus her banana pudding, lemon pie, and coconut cake--are foods I dearly miss as an adult now and wish I had appreciated more as a kid.
posted by Kitteh at 12:36 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


grooble?
posted by stenseng at 12:38 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


add some actual whole kernel sweet corn to the batter

From the article: "Country ham, crawfish, or fresh corn are “sacrilege,” to quote McDaniel. When flashy foods end up in the mix, the batter becomes a vessel for the more illustrious company, and the hushpuppy is no longer a hushpuppy—it’s a fritter."

Or what ROU_Xenophobe said.
posted by FreezBoy at 12:39 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


Fiiiiiine whatevah I'm gonna keep all the sweet corn ice cream to myself then, PEDANTS.
posted by phunniemee at 12:42 PM on January 9 [10 favorites]


That there is a corn fritter, not a hush puppy.

Came here to say the same thing. Corn fritters are amazing - better than hush puppies - but are not hush puppies.

Also, while you're got the batter there and ready to go, slice up some apples, coat them in batter, and fry up some apple fritters. Mmm.
posted by The World Famous at 12:44 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


Metafilter: fuck you, fuckball!
posted by lalochezia at 12:45 PM on January 9 [7 favorites]


Where I live now it's a thing to make corn fritters and serve them hot with powdered sugar before you tear into a big plate of seafood. It's insane.

But real hush puppies, like my grandma made, contain pickle relish. Jalapeno? Damn Yankee carpetbaggers.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 12:50 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


My friend had his yearly clog-your-arteries fry party a few weeks ago and I finally made some hushpuppy batter myself and brought it. Paula Deen's recipe worked quite well. I even had to improvise the buttermilk with some regular milk and lemon. I wished I'd had some catfish to go with. The guy in Louisiana who made them for me in his backyard said he added Ro-Tel to his. Good stuff.
posted by ericales at 12:53 PM on January 9


I remember the hush puppies that came with my beloved Long John Silvers fried fish meals, growing up in Missouri, as completely disgusting wastes of space. Dry, flavorless nothings. I had no interest in hush puppies at all as a result for the next couple of decades.

Then I moved to North Carolina, and my god. They are pellet shaped here, which is what tricked me into trying them in the first place - I thought it was a delicious fried item of unknown name the first time I tried one. It was a game changer, though. Clearly there must be some sort of magic in the pellet shape.
posted by something something at 12:57 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


My grandma in Arkansas ran a little catfish/hushpuppy joint , and since she died it's been taken over by my uncle. They became pretty popular and he spends his mornings making deliveries. Despite him coaching me every time I visit I haven't been able to come close to his hushpuppies, which is aggravating as hell since they're so simple.
posted by edeezy at 12:59 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


It’s not a fine food that is enhanced by frying. On the contrary, it is nothing without frying.

This slander against good honest oven-baked cornbread shall not stand, sir! Pistols at dawn!
posted by Strange Interlude at 1:04 PM on January 9 [5 favorites]


lalochezia: "Metafilter: fuck you, fuckball!"

Mmm, deep fried fuckballs. Another Paula Deen treat.
posted by chavenet at 1:09 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]


I'd think you all were crazy about actually LIKING hush puppies, but I realize I may be the culprit and have just never had a good one. The ones I've had always too dry or bland or crumbly. Seriously though I may have to make my own to see if I'm the problem or you're the problem.
posted by Carillon at 1:10 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: grooble the exposed bit of interior around in the little bits of barbecue sauce
posted by jquinby at 1:20 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Hushpuppies, done properly, are awesome in ways that go beyond the English language, or, I'd wager, any language on the planet Earth.
posted by zardoz at 1:26 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]


Since going to school in the South and then moving away, I've sort of fantasized about making hushpuppies, but where in the world does one get self-rising cornmeal? I've never seen it in my area.
posted by LionIndex at 1:28 PM on January 9


Now I want hushpuppies just so I can grooble them.
posted by rtha at 1:28 PM on January 9 [6 favorites]


In the 15 years or so since I moved from The South to Toronto, the BBQ scene here has gone from non-existent to bland to shockingly good if a little too pricey or high-falutin'. But I still can't find anyone in this metropolis that makes halfway-decent hush puppy.

That and grits.
posted by thecjm at 1:30 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


That and grits.

Bad Crow on Dupont Avenue makes superb grits, for the record.
posted by mightygodking at 1:34 PM on January 9


Also, I think its important to state that the best way to eat these hushpuppies is with a bucket of a dozen steamed blue crabs, seasoned with Old Bay, and a cold beer.

Then you will see the point, Carillon
posted by C.A.S. at 1:35 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


This slander against good honest oven-baked cornbread shall not stand, sir! Pistols at dawn!

Hear, hear! Cornbread which, like hush puppies, does not have any whole corn or ham or other vile adulterations in it. (And is this person disparaging polenta? It hardly seems possible.)
posted by hattifattener at 1:35 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


That and grits.

Bad Crow on Dupont Avenue makes superb grits, for the record.


Are they grits or are they grits?
posted by thecjm at 1:38 PM on January 9


Interesting. I wonder if I could keto this by substituting almond meal for the cornflour. I will report back with my findings.
posted by turbid dahlia at 1:39 PM on January 9


"A simple triumph of opportunity and ingenuity over poverty, the hushpuppy is one of the most American foods imaginable, an embodiment of the pioneer spirit."

Ugh, never mind.
posted by turbid dahlia at 1:41 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Whole corn and/or jalapenos don't belong in hushpuppies. In cornbread? Sure, knock yourself out. Hell, add cheese and shit and you got yourself a mighty fancy cornbread. Not for every day consumption, mind, but on occasion it's a nice way to spice things up.

But hushpuppies need to be simple. What got me is you people are eating them wrong. There is no bbq sauce or hot sauce or whatever else y'all think y'all need, it's just butter. Dip the sucker in butter and eat. That's it. If it's still warm (and it should be, I mean you're eating them at an all-you-can-eat catfish joint so your hushpuppies are always fresh out of the oil) then it will melt the butter just enough to allow you to get a nice chunk of it per hushpuppy.

Also, you don't need self-rising cornmeal to make them. All self-rising flours are is regular flour that has the baking powder/soda already added in. So just take regular cornmeal and wheat flour and add your own soda/powder.
posted by bfootdav at 1:42 PM on January 9


Are they grits or are they grits?

They're gritty grits. Not as thick as some polenta, not as watery as instant grits.
posted by mightygodking at 1:42 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Then I moved to North Carolina, and my god

2nded.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 1:44 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


Iowa may grow a ton of corn but hush puppies are totally not in the repertoire. It took a trip to Georgia for me to find hush puppies and learn how corn is best applied.
posted by Foam Pants at 1:45 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Every now and then I get a grease deficiency and I stop by Long John's and get twelve hushpuppies, and munch on them for the next couple of days (reheating one at a time in the toaster oven). This next trip is all your fault, metafilter.
posted by dilettante at 1:46 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


I eat my hushpuppies and fried catfish like I do french fries. With ketchup. That is all.
posted by ericales at 1:55 PM on January 9 [5 favorites]


Keeping 'grooble'.
posted by sandettie light vessel automatic at 2:08 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Y'all gon' love this. The real: HushPuppy Cookin Barn 12/25/2010 Downeast NC
posted by laconic skeuomorph at 2:14 PM on January 9


Also, you don't need self-rising cornmeal to make them. All self-rising flours are is regular flour that has the baking powder/soda already added in. So just take regular cornmeal and wheat flour and add your own soda/powder.

A good rule of thumb is 1 tsp baking powder to 1 cup flour or cornmeal.
posted by fogovonslack at 2:27 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Speaking of corn fritters, I would like to share my mother's recipe for my favorite food in the entire world, known to our family as "corn patties". I can sit and eat these until I'm so full I want to puke. I don't want steak, lobster, or fancy foods, I want my momma's corn patties.

I tried to make them myself once without knowing the recipe - with cream corn and Bisquick - it did not turn out at all like what Mom produces.. but I ate them anyway.
posted by mrbill at 2:31 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]


The very first thing I ever said to my younger brother was to offer him a hushpuppy.
posted by asperity at 2:35 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]


As a transplanted Yankee I never dug 'em 'til I had some at a local spot (I'm in Memphis now) that yeah, studs the batter with whole kernels of corn as well as a very slight but just right amount of minced green chile. When they're simply greasy balls of bland batter I'm not that into it, but with a little sweetness and heat and surprise chew inside, they're wonderful. My Southern born and raised husband loves them no matter what though.
posted by ifjuly at 2:42 PM on January 9


I also think Carolina-style's the best barbecue I've ever had, so what do I know as a confused Memphian.
posted by ifjuly at 2:43 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


The man who invented "quick/instant grits" deserves the special hell.
posted by drewbage1847 at 2:51 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


So, these are basically latkes for goyim?
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:54 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


There's no shortage of different kinds of fried dough. It's my life's ambition to try them all.
posted by asperity at 2:56 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


This thread made me explore my repressed memories of "Skippers" which used to have a location in Aurora, CO. So much better than Long John Silver's. Such good hush doges. wow
posted by lordaych at 2:59 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


The guy in Louisiana who made them for me in his backyard said he added Ro-Tel to his.

I'm sure the actual content is fine, but I have trouble getting past the fact that the product name sounds like a lawn-fertilizer brand.
posted by Greg_Ace at 3:19 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


I just gained four pounds reading asperity's list.

Thanks a bunch.
posted by Pudhoho at 3:23 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


This is a quibble, but I submit one groobles up the sauce/juice and dressing with the hushpuppie, instead of groobleing the hushpuppie around in the sauce/juice and dressing.
posted by rainbaby at 3:23 PM on January 9


And here in Cleveland we have the wonder that is the sauerkraut ball. Oh yes. This is how my mom makes them.

Fried ball-shaped things are ALWAYS good.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 3:24 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


I love them. I adore them. They don't exist in Japan. Mrs. Ghidorah doesn't like the texture of cornbread/cornmeal. Making a batch of hush puppies just for myself is a bit... extreme.

I'm just going to sit here and sob a bit. Sobbing, interspersed with moments of extreme jealousy.
posted by Ghidorah at 3:31 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


Doesn't hushpuppies mean someone nearby is frying something worth eating? I grew up in NC and I always thought it was a trick to keep the kids away from the real food.
posted by headless at 3:53 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


(reheating one at a time in the toaster oven)

And you can do this just once in a sitting?

Are you a wizard?
posted by flaterik at 3:57 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


(reheating one at a time in the toaster oven)

And you can do this just once in a sitting?

Are you a wizard?


No, I just like my hushpuppies hot. It's fast paced serial reheating.

And of course I eat like four or five right of the little box as soon as I get them home.

Actually, I might take that back. What do I win if I'm a wizard?
posted by dilettante at 4:13 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


I make an annual sojourn from my humdrum existence to my Southern idyll in low country Georgia, and along the way, I have traditionally timed my journeys to place a mealtime squarely in the moment when I enter the city limits of Rocky Mount, North Carolina. I don't eat at all that day, and eat light on days leading up to my trip because my intention on each trip is to ameliorate the lack of proper Carolina Q in my home region and that means I need to eat a year's worth of pulled pork and hush puppies in one sitting.

I pull up in front of Gardner's, check in at the counter, get a seat, get my plate, and pile up a stack of pork approximately the size of my head on the plastic plate with a landslide of hush puppies on the side. This is a mortifying reënactment of the sin of gluttony, I know, so it's best when I'm traveling alone, without, say, my mother along for the ride to scowl as I consume several pounds of perfectly turned pig with vinegar and hot sauce, hitting the hush puppies like little punctuation marks at the end of a carnivorous sentence. Dip the hush puppy in a pool of hot sauce, kill it in two bites, then back to the plate, then the next plate.

"Ugh, Joe, it makes me lightheaded just watching that," my mother will say on those trips on which she's along for the ride, and she will eat ridiculous things like salad and cornbread and cake, but it's the meat, and damn, I will one day be a vegetarian, but I will always leave a little allowance for this one meal.

At the end, though, I always leave one last hush puppy for the last bite.

"Always that lone hush puppy," my mother will point out, from experience.

"Soaks up the fat and calories," I say, dip it in the hot sauce, and pin the period at the end of the line.

See you next year, Gardner's!
posted by sonascope at 4:13 PM on January 9 [14 favorites]


...hushpuppies are cornmeal in a state of grace.

Can I get an Amen?

AMEN, BROTHER!!
posted by BlueHorse at 4:18 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


This is a quibble, but I submit one groobles up the sauce/juice and dressing with the hushpuppie, instead of groobleing the hushpuppie around in the sauce/juice and dressing.

No, one glorps up the various delicious fluids by groobling the hush puppy around in them. Like this -- *makes groobling motions*
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:55 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


Also: fuck you, fuckball.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:57 PM on January 9


Thank you, fogovonslack.

I know you Americans have self-rising flour, and I've seen work-arounds for that before, but I'd never heard of self-rising cornmeal, so I was trying to figure out how much extra leavener I'd have to add to regular cornmeal to make the Paula Deen recipe work.
posted by sardonyx at 6:11 PM on January 9


The best and most properest way to each a hush puppy is to first eat your plate of pulled pork and cole slaw, and then bite off the end of a puppy, and then you sort of grooble the exposed bit of interior around in the little bits of barbecue sauce/juice and slaw dressing that are still on the plate.


1) grooble. wow.

2) wrong. hush puppies suck when cold and should be eaten piping hot out of the fryer while chef gives you the stinkeye and asks if there's enough left for the table

Bad Crow on Dupont Avenue makes superb grits, for the record.

This is obviously a lie because grits, sorry The South, are like eating warm chewy snot.

Polenta's nice though, especially if chilled then grilled.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:16 PM on January 9


If grits are chewy and snot-like, they've been prepared wrong.

Similarly, if polenta is better chilled and grilled, it wasn't prepared right when it was fresh. Chilled and grilled is what you do with the leftovers. If it's not better than leftovers when it's fresh and piping hot, you call up my friend's mom in Bergamo and don't even put her on speakerphone to yell at the cook. In fact, once you tell her about the bad polenta, just hang up the phone and open the window, since you'll be able to hear her wherever you are.
posted by The World Famous at 6:23 PM on January 9


I don't know, The World Famous. Risotto is great, great stuff, but leftover risotto, mixed with bread crumbs, an egg, and minced-whatever-else-you-had-with-the-risotto-last-night, then pan-fried like latkes? Infinitely better than risotto. As in, the whole reason for making risotto in the first place better.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:26 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


If grits are chewy and snot-like, they've been prepared wrong.

Okay but this is venturing into No True Scotsman territory. Every single time I have had grits, including in the South prepared at home by Southerners, I have wanted to puke. Sorry. The texture is I think something you need to be acclimatized to.

Risotto is great, great stuff, but leftover risotto, mixed with bread crumbs, an egg, and minced-whatever-else-you-had-with-the-risotto-last-night, then pan-fried like latkes?

Or turned into balls around cheese. Mm, arancini.

Similarly, if polenta is better chilled and grilled, it wasn't prepared right when it was fresh.

Or, you know, not. At all. To grill or fry polenta you need to make it far more solid than if you are eating it as, basically, corn porridge. Using soft spoonable polenta on a grill means you will have polenta under your grill, burning.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:32 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


The trick to grits? Cooked right, and then plenty of butter and salt added and then mooshed around.

OR alternately, served alongside an overmedium or overlight egg and stirred around so the liquidy yolk is mixed in with the grits.

THAT is good eating.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 6:34 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


OR alternately, served alongside an overmedium or overlight egg

Why would you 'over' an egg at all? Sunny side up is the One True Fried Egg.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:39 PM on January 9


Up until now, I've been able to get over every blasphemous, offensive thing people have written on MeFi and just be happy to be part of a great community.

But this? This is TOO FAR.
posted by The World Famous at 6:50 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]


could you narrow it down a bit maybe
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:10 PM on January 9


Christ, now I want these foods that I can't get so quick and easy so I guess I'll get a burrito.
posted by rtha at 7:21 PM on January 9


so I guess I'll get a burrito.

ok i guess i can stay
posted by The World Famous at 7:24 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


1) I just ate a burrito, but it was a No True ScotsMan Mission Burrito But Chipotle So Even Less True MissionBurritoMan.

2) Over medium defeats sunny side up oolwess, takes more skill but is the only game in town if you want awesome yolk but zero snot or burned up edge edges.

3) Too lazy to see if this has come up besides a cursory CTRL+F, but to the person who proposed that "real food is nearby," the apocryphal story is that these were created to shut up dogs, like "I'm frying some chicken you fuckin' puppy, shut your ass up" but then you'd have to let them cool a little or they'd be called "yelp puppies you are an abuser" amirite.

But if you just consider them another form of doughnut, beignet, etc, except more savory and rustic, they begin to make sense, unless you are a starch bigot (just kidding, but I like the sound of it).
posted by lordaych at 7:28 PM on January 9


i kind of want to spend a day feeding rtha fried crunchy things and listening to her wisdom
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:28 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


The curious thing about grits is that there's a sort of mainstream variety, which you find in most places, and then there's a more robust, thicker, yellower variety that you find in farm towns and out in the less-traveled-by places, which is to slushy white grits what Guiness is to a Milwaukee's Best Light. My cousins prepare grits of this variety, which furthers my occasional daydreams that, at some point in my life, I need to park a dented Airstream in the wayback on our family's former gold mine property, go native, and write a languid Southern book under a canopy of pine and muscadine arbors.

In the same way there is both glorious Delmarva-type scrapple and glum, jaundiced, gamey Pennsylvania scrapple, sometimes it's not the food as much as it's the regional variation.
posted by sonascope at 7:32 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


2) Over medium defeats sunny side up oolwess, takes more skill but is the only game in town if you want awesome yolk but zero snot or burned up edge edges.

Yeah um no. I always do my eggs sunny side up; if I have to do over in a pro kitchen I don't fuck around and I just blast it in the sally.

Here is the best sunny side up eggs you will ever have in your life, you're welcome:

1) Separate your eggs. Yes, seriously. But, and this is important, each egg gets separated into separate bowls.

2) In a cast iron pan, fry your egg white(s, separately) over very gentle heat. You want it to just set. A little colour is fine if you like that sort of thing.

3) Slide your white(s) onto a Silpat. Carefully place an unbroken yolk on top.

4) Season liberally with salt (sea or kosher or whatever, just not that iodized nonsense), and a few drops of good balsamic. (The good stuff is expensive, yes. But you make up for that by only needing drips and drabs at a time. The intensity of flavour in a $40-50 bottle of actual real balsamico di Modena will ensure it lasts as long as the normal bottle of grain vinegar + must + caramel colour that you get at the supermarket, except okay it tastes a zillion times better so you start looking for excuses. I advise it on good vanilla ice cream and/or strawberries.)

5) Throw the assemblage under a motherfucking hot broiler (not a salamander, silpats can get very upset by that sort of thing) until the top of the yolk and the white are just set and the yolk is warm through.

6) Eat and/or bask in the adoration of the minions falling at your feet.

This is obviously not an everyday preparation, but once in a while it is totally worth it and will often get you post-brunch nookie in my experience.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:35 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


The curious thing about grits is that there's a sort of mainstream variety, which you find in most places, and then there's a more robust, thicker, yellower variety that you find in farm towns and out in the less-traveled-by places, which is to slushy white grits what Guiness is to a Milwaukee's Best Light.

Okay, I've only ever had the slushy white kind. Grody to the max. If there is another kind I am willing to try 'em.

FOR SCIENCE
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:37 PM on January 9


Oh fuck and in that recipe be generous with fresh cracked black pepper. Not crazy like a carbonara (mmm), but liberal.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:39 PM on January 9


Best sunny side up eggs? I beg to differ.
posted by sonascope at 7:44 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Those are fantastic but those are much closer to eggs en cocotte, and are in no way fried. 'Sunny side up' implies some sort of frying at some point, or at least implies a classic cartoon yellow-blob-on-white-blob end result.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:57 PM on January 9


I would happily spend all day eating fried crunchy things and spouting bullshit. Oh wait.
posted by rtha at 8:00 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


Making a batch of hush puppies just for myself is a bit... extreme.

Excuse for a meetup?
posted by 23 at 8:01 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


WISDOM rtha, WISDOM.

Making a batch of hush puppies just for myself is a bit... extreme.

i missed this the first time and do not understand hope me
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:07 PM on January 9


Also, I'm sure nanoha tempura is great or whatever, but the real best fried food in Japan - and, going by flavor, the world - is beni shouga kushiage.

So kushiage just means fried-thing-on-a-stick; kushi is written 串, naturally. Beni shouga is ginger picked lightly in red plum juice, usually served as little strips but for frying mostly left as sheets. At a kushiage place you order a bunch of sticks at a time and dip them in a deep bowl of sweet Worcester sauce (only once!) right before you eat them.

The total effect of putting something warm, sweet, salty, crunchy, firm, dripping and flat enough to taste all at once and spicy enough to be just a touch uncomfortable is a total consciousness-enveloping experience - it's like having candied electricity.
posted by 23 at 8:12 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


holy goddamn fuck there is deepfried gari and i have never put this in my mouth

TO JAPAN, MINIONS
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 8:16 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


Going along with the 'in Japan, we have this' thing, there's, of course, the all-you-can-eat deal. It's always set to a time limit, like 90 minutes or two hours, and, as an American, I feel like I must get my money's worth, which means gluttony. I really try to avoid that kind of thing now.* Before I made that switch, though, Mrs. Ghidorah and I would, every so often, decide that we wanted to get kushiage. Kushiage in Chiba basically means go to a chain, get the all you can eat deal.

You sit at a booth, and there's a deep frier in the center of the table. The bench seats lift up so you can put your coats and bags in there, to keep them from getting coated in oil. You load up your little plate with things on sticks, dip them in batter, dip them in panko, and fry. Every single time, at the end of our meal, we'd look at each other and say, "Why do we keep doing this?" Then, of course, is the ritual leaving of the restaurant and realizing that we smell like an old deep-frier.

On the other hand, Osaka kushiage shops= good times. Sit as far away from the oil as you can, eat a couple sticks of fried goodness, drink a beer, and move on.

*On the other hand, Japan also has all-you-can-drink specials. These are written as 飲み放題, or nomi hodai. They are magical, and usually ridiculously cheap, and normally have draft beer, cocktails, shochu, and so on. I can't imagine going to a karaoke box that didn't have a nomi hodai.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:45 PM on January 9 [2 favorites]


... will often get you post-brunch nookie

Ehh, but then I'll be all logy and won't be able to enjoy it.

and if I'm not logy after brunch it wasn't a proper brunch
posted by Greg_Ace at 10:16 PM on January 9


You sit at a booth, and there's a deep frier in the center of the table. The bench seats lift up so you can put your coats and bags in there, to keep them from getting coated in oil. You load up your little plate with things on sticks, dip them in batter, dip them in panko, and fry.

i want to go to there

when my guy gets back from where he is i am telling him my sincerest christmas and birthday wish next year is to go to japan

*crossing fingers*

... will often get you post-brunch nookie

Ehh, but then I'll be all logy and won't be able to enjoy it.


if you don't know how to enjoy lazy half asleep sex i don't know what to tell you*

* except that i can provide lessons on this subject at very reasonable rates, SAIT
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:22 PM on January 9 [1 favorite]


I get a really good rate in town. Do you validate parking, too?
posted by The World Famous at 11:18 PM on January 9


if you don't know how to enjoy lazy half asleep sex i don't know what to tell you*
* except that i can provide lessons on this subject at very reasonable rates, SAIT


1) I'm gonna go out on a limb here, and make a guess that you won't get much Thanksgiving Day business.

2) I claim that "lazy half asleep" is different from "calorie-sated semi-comatose".

3) I'd prefer to test that hypothesis on an empty stomach!
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:26 PM on January 9


1) I'm gonna go out on a limb here, and make a guess that you won't get much Thanksgiving Day business.


You'd be surprised.

2) I claim that "lazy half asleep" is different from "calorie-sated semi-comatose".

tomayto, tomahto.

3) I'd prefer to test that hypothesis on an empty stomach!

look whatever you like dude but it's 20 SAIT
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:22 AM on January 10


Hush puppies are delicious if cooked with finely minced onions. This is the One True Addition.
posted by sonic meat machine at 4:19 AM on January 10


look whatever you like dude but it's 20 SAIT

Too late, I already spent all my money on hushpuppy ingredients.
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:29 AM on January 10 [2 favorites]


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