Does everything taste better fried? Chefs across the U.S. are testing that theory by deep-frying everything from soup to pizza. These five deliciously crunchy, totally unexpected creations are proving the answer really might be yes.
Fried Clam Chowder, Skipper Restaurant & Chowder House, Cape Cod
Cape Cod's Skipper Restaurant & Chowder House has been around since 1936. The popular joint, which counts country music singer Lee Brice and Rachel Dratch of Saturday Night Live among its many fans, serves up an ingenious house take on clam chowder. The dish starts with a traditional creamy chowder base chock-full of chopped clams and potatoes; the base is then thickened, formed into two cakes, and deep-fried in a panko breadcrumb crust for a crunchy treat that’s all fork and no spoon. Add extra zing by mixing in the side of hot sauce.
Fried Deviled Eggs, Lucy’s Fried Chicken, Austin
Basic deviled eggs are easy to make, but play with the ingredients and flavors and this simple picnic food turns into a surprisingly versatile snack. The laid-back Austin restaurant Lucy’s Fried Chicken serves one of our favorite twists: the fried deviled egg. These incredible little things involve a fabulous chicken-skin aioli, and they're coated with ultra-flavorful buttermilk breading.
Chicken-Fried Lobster, The Dawson, Chicago
Chicken-fried steak is a thing all over the South, but chicken-fried lobster? The Dawson in Chicago serves a five-ounce lobster tail marinated in buttermilk, dredged in flour and fried until golden brown. Dip it into the accompanying side of housemade spicy ranch sauce and pair it with an ice-cold draft beer, and that's really all you need to eat, ever.
Fried Marrow and Frisée Salad, The Durham House, Houston
A fried salad? Well, sort of. The Durham House in Houston, which specializes in vibrant Provençal and Creole-inspired dishes, takes a frisee salad and gives it a decadent spin by adding amazingly rich, juicy fried bone-marrow tots. But just to keep things on the virtuous side, the salad is also topped with cherry tomatoes, shaved heirloom carrots, olives and a lemon fennel vinaigrette. Photo by Max Burkhalter.
Montanara Pizza, Forcella, New York
Fans love Forcella for its authentic Neapolitan pizzas, but the New York City joint (which has multiple locations) takes the thin-crust icon to a whole new level with its fried Montanara pizza. The dough is dropped into the fryer before going into the wood-burning oven, topped with lots of sauce and Mozzarella. Extra-crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, the pie is similar to a Margarita, only—dare we say—better. Photo: forcellaonpark/ Instagram.