2 very large onions*, cut into 3/4 inch rings and separate
3 cups oil
2 cups flour
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup club soda
1 teaspoon paprika
hot sauce (I used Tabasco brand Habanero Sauce)
In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, a few drops hot sauce and eggs. Stir in the club soda and toss the onion rings in the mixture. Allow to soak 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a pot with high sides, heat the oil to 350. Whisk together the flour, paprika and salt and pepper. Drain the onion rings and toss with the flour. Carefully drop about 4 onion rings into the hot oil, cook until golden brown, flipping once. Remove to paper towel lined plates and repeat for remaining onions. Alternately, fill a few pots with oil and cook several batches at once. Salt and serve hot.
*I found some that were over 1 lb each! If you are using smaller onions, you might need to use more than two.
I had never made onion rings before and sort of expected it to be more difficult than it was. The batter was perfectly crisp thanks to the club soda and if you keep the oil hot, virtually grease free.
Update 06/04/07: When I made these back on the 30th, the recipe made too much for just two people. So I refrigerated the extra flour covered rings (before frying) and fried them up tonight. It worked out just fine, I couldn’t tell the difference between the fresh and the “leftovers”. I am glad I thought of it, cooked onion rings do not hold up well and I would have just ended up throwing them out. This way, I had onion rings twice-almost a week apart-and the second time involved no prep whatsoever.