From Season 10: Best Burgers and Fries
Electric deep fryers seem doubly appealing: Not only are they safer than stovetop frying (because of their enclosed heating elements), but they also have lids and filters to reduce mess and smell. Could any top our usual method of deep frying in a Dutch oven with a candy thermometer clipped on? We made French fries in six fryers priced from $49.95 to $135.95 to find out. Every one had a problem reaching and staying at the correct temperature. Set to the maximum temperature, 375 degrees, most could only reach 350 degrees (a few not even that)—resulting in limp, greasy fries. Two models overshot the top temperature and got too hot but did produce crisp fries. The best of the lot had a wide, shallow basket big enough to cook a full batch (four potatoes serving four people) of fries that were uniformly crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. It works—but not well enough to replace our Dutch oven.
Victorinox (formerly Victorinox Forschner) 6-inch Straight Boning Knife: Flexible
The nonslip grip and narrow, straight blade let testers remove the smallest bones with precision and complete comfort. Perfectly balanced with enough flexibility to maneuver around tight joints. The low price was a bonus.
|★ ★ ★||★ ★ ★||$19.95|
Wüsthof Classic Boning Knife
Hefty in weight, this knife was a solid performer when removing poultry bones, and the handle was easy to grip, even when covered in chicken fat. Piercing silver skin was a challenge since the tip wasnt sharp enough and the long narrow blade produced slightly jagged cuts.
|★ ★||★ ★ ★||$99.95|
|Recommended with Reservations|
Mundial Boning Knife: Flexible
The sharp tip performed well when removing silver skin, but it was too flexible when maneuvering around poultry joints, leaving testers feeling a lack of control. The heavy handle was slightly unbalanced and became slippery once covered in poultry fat.
|★ ★||★ ★||$19.95|
Shun Gokujo Filet Knife
Designed to replicate a samurai blade, this expensive knife was a disappointment. It struggled to pierce the silver skin, although long cuts were smooth and even. Minimal flexibility and extreme curve got in the way when maneuvering around joints. The smooth handle was hard to grip and slippery.
MAC Boning KnifeChef Series
The large, cumbersome handle reminded testers of an outdoors knife for fishing and hunting. The blade was too wide to maneuver around joints and it struggled to pierce silver skin. Unlike other knives, this boning knife could only slice in one direction, making intricate cuts around joints difficult.
Messermeister San Moritz Elite Flexible Boning Knife
The blade was so flexible it led to erratic cuttings; testers said the knife was hard to control. The blade was not sturdy enough to maneuver around joints and the lightweight handle felt flimsy and unbalanced.