I used to be terribly lazy when it comes to making crispy fried shallots. I love fried shallots because they make soups taste so good.
But guess what? I am now motivated and I found a way to make crispy fried shallots, the easy way.
First, we need shallots. And yes, you have to peel them. I keep shallots in the fridge because I find that they keep fresh longer. I used to find rotting shallots when I kept them at room temperature.
Shallots that are kept in the fridge don't make you cry when you peel them.
Next you need a tool to help you slice the shallots quickly and at a consistent thickness. I used to slice them using a knife and that was so tedious. I ended up with thick and thin slices.
You have to be careful though not to slice your finger in the process. You will end up with odd pieces towards the end. Just save them for cooking.
These odd pieces I used for making omelettes.
So. How much oil to use, ah? This is my method. My very practical method.
Just put all the sliced shallots into a pan. I love this flat bottomed pan and it is perfect for making crispy fried shallots.
Then pour in the oil. I used good old Minyak Cap Buruh. Pour just enough to sort of cover the shallots.
There is no need to put too much to completely cover the shallots because the shallots will shrink as they cook. Then fire up your stove.
When the color starts to turn brownish like this, keep an eye on the shallots and keep stirring. Do not, I repeat, do not walk away and do other stuff because at this point it can get burnt very easily.
I use my favorite tool, the canning funnel to make the transfer of the crispy fried shallots and oil to a bottle without any spillage.
At first I stored the bottle in the fridge but I was told that the oil does not go rancid. So I took the bottle out from the fridge and let stand at room temperature.
My theory is that the crispy shallots are submerged in oil and do not come into contact with moisture. That is why they can stay crispy.
Why do I keep the shallots in oil and not separate them into another container? Well, I went to a Chinese New Year gathering at my partner's sister's house a few years ago.
We had steamboat. That's when I noticed that his people (hah..hah..) don't bother to separate the shallots (unlike my grandma and mum). There was a bottle of fried shallots in oil at the table for everyone to help themselves. But the shallots were limp. But it didn't matter because shallot oil rocks!