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Oven Fried Onion Rings
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. paprika
salt and black pepper
30 saltine crackers
4 cups kettle-cooked potato chips
2 large yellow onions
6 TBS. vegetable oil
Adjust your oven racks to the lower-middle and upper-middle positions, and preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Get out 3 shallow baking dishes. In the first one, spread 1/4 cup of the flour. In the second, whisk together the egg, buttermilk, remaining 1/4 cup flour, cayenne, paprika, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper.
Pulse the chips and the saltines in a food processor until finely ground. Spread the crumbs in the third baking dish.
Slice the onions into 1/2-inch thick rounds. Separate the rings. Set aside any rings smaller than 2 inches in diameter for another use.
Pour 3 TBS. of oil onto each of 2 rimmed baking sheets (I lined them with foil first, for easier clean-up later). Place the sheets in the oven and heat until just smoking, about 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, prep the onion rings. Working with 1 at a time, dredge in the flour, shaking off excess. Dip the rings in the buttermilk mixture, allowing excess to drip back into the dish (I took Josie of Pink Parsley’s advice and used a fork for this step). Drop the rings in the crumb mixture and turn them to coat evenly. Transfer rings to a large platter or baking sheet.
Carefully remove the baking sheets from the oven and tilt them to coat evenly with oil. Arrange the onions in a single layer on the baking sheets. Bake, flipping the onion rings and switching and rotating the position of the baking sheets halfway through baking, until golden-brown on both sides, about 15 minutes. Briefly drain the onion rings on paper towels before serving.
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