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Image Source: Seafish Asset Bank

Who would think you could write about skimming oils? It may not seem like an essential factor. Skimming is another critical component of maintaining good a good frying medium, just as important is the fact that if you want a piece of battered fish to have no blemishes and no leftover burnt scraps or carbon stuck to it then skimming is vital.

Maintaining clean oil is an integral part of any fish & chip shops best practices. Keeping your fryer clean of floating debris helps extend your oil’s life. Each fryer should be skimmed of any floating debris after each load of fish. Ten seconds of skimming per pan is all it takes. There is simply no excuse not to skim your pans. Simply store your skimmer nearby for easy access.

Skimming will provide several benefits:

⭕ Removing burnt or overcooked food debris reduces the chances of water and minerals cooking into the frying oil and will help extend the oil life

⭕ Skimming throughout the day will reduce the amount of debris that must be filtered. Reducing filtration times equals less time spent cleaning the fryer when filtering the oil.

⭕ Frequent skimming means less chance of carbon formation; less carbon means less burnt flavour in the oil.

⭕ Frequent skimming allows you to lift our scraps as fast as possible; this means less water in the pan and more heat in the oil.

⭕ Excessive overcooked debris builds up polymerisation in and around the fry pot. Polymerisation will require additional scrubbing to remove.

‼️ Skimming used in conjunction with regular filtering will massively improve your oil quality, it is pretty pointless having the best oil and a filter regimen without removing scraps, debris and carbon while frying.

Not sure which skimmer to choose?

You wouldn’t think you can go wrong ordering a mesh skimmer, but believe it or not, it can be a bit of a minefield. I know how confusing it can be ordering a mesh skimmer online because of the mesh sizes. 

It is worth remembering this; Higher mesh numbers = Smaller particle sizes. 

So you may think that if you order the highest number mesh, it will give you the best outcome. In theory, it will, but it will also be slower as it will not flow as fast in the oil as you would like and if it goes too slow and you force it then the oil will just go around the mesh instead of through it. 

On the flip side, the lower the number could mean you are not scooping up all the fine particles at the bottom of the pan. 

To get started it is probably best to order a 50 mesh skimmer

Photo Credit – Drywite

Skimmers come in various shapes and sizes; I would only get around one if you have a round pan; otherwise, you will spend a lot of time trying to get crumbs out the corners of the pan.


⭕ It is worth noting that a clean skimmer will give you efficient scooping, I would say cleaning daily will provide you with optimum results. However, you must make sure you have left no detergent residue, and you always let it dry before use.

⭕ Always have a spare, they always break when you don’t expect it, and you don’t want to function without one. 

To order a skimmer visit Drywite.co.uk

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