Well before Paula Deen was a Food Network darling, the South’s cuisine was well established. If it’s a vegetable, deep fry it; if it’s a meat, deep fry it; heck….we even deep fry candy bars here. (Do NOT turn up your nose and be a food snob. You have not lived until you’ve had a deep fried Snickers….cholesterol and calories be darned.) Therefore, it should come as no surprise to those that know I am Tarheel-born and bred that I must have something battered and deep fried as one of my 365 daily challenges…..and, let’s be honest…..it will probably be more than just one of the 365. Because every Southerner (whether native or transplant) knows there is nothing that fills a soul and a belly at the same time like breading, batter, or butter.
Today after church my family visited a new local restuarant in our area — Carolina Ale House. (Oh Emm Gee !!! Could I sound anymore Southern — church, family lunch, AND deep fried food on a Sunday. I swear Robert E Lee was somewhere singing “Song of the South” as our waitress poured our sweet tea.) I got a sampler platter at the request of my oldest son, E, who was dying to try the deep friend pickles…otherwise known as frickles. I’ve seen them on lots of menus, but never tried them before. I wasn’t quite sure if I wanted to place an entire order of them as an appetizer so having them on a sampler plate like this was perfect. They came with wings, cheese sticks, and chicken tenders. (My doctor is going to HATE me for this! So not smart when your cholesterol is high.) Typically, they dip the dill pickle chips in a buttermilk bath before dredging through a flour-based seasoning breading then frying. However, with E’s food allergies to milk, we had the chef skip the buttermilk bath. Just breading and frying. The plate came with ranch and marinara dipping sauces.
The frickles were delish! (But really, what’s not good when deep fried? Even squid is yummy that way.) The sourness of the dill pickling was present and not at all overpowered. The breading was light, golden brown, and just the right amount of saltiness. They were fabulous especially with the ranch. Everything was great, in fact.
This new food gets full endorsement from me and E…..they get bonus points since the chef made them especially for us to be allergy friendly!