Air Fryer Fail -0/10

It has taken me a week to gather myself to talk about my recent Instant Pot Duo Air Fryer catastrophe. As I continue to use this awesome machine, there are bound to be some hiccups along the way. But I was really surprised this was such an epic fail. Having seen how nice chips turned out. I was sure my cauliflower popcorns would be a triumph of crispy goodness.

Cauliflower popcorns are normally quickly fried in some oil, having been coated with egg and corn flour. A replica of chicken popcorns. Ill be posting a recipe in the coming days so you’ll see how easy they are. I decided instead of frying and to be more healthy. I would give the air fryer a go. I have seen recipes for southern fried chicken in the air fryer, so thought it would be a no brainer. How wrong was I?

I began by lightly spraying the internal pot of the air fryer as is the general instruction when using it. I dipped my little florets in their egg and flour, giving them a spritz of the same oil to ensure crisping was achieved. I popped an even layer into the Air Fryer on the bottom, inserted the the steel plate for a second layer (the one normally used for dehydration) and started the fryer on default setting for 10 minutes.

After about 5 minutes cooking the machine pauses and asks you to turn the food to get an even crisp. Mine didn’t need turning, they needed a burial. Totally dried out, some black, with the flour that normally crisps up being part uncooked and part cremated. The cauliflower itself wasn’t even cooked!

Overcooked cauliflower popcorns.

The ones on the top rack closest to the lid were the worst. Some of the ones in the main air fryer pot were saved just on time. So I finished the process in a little oil on the hob. All was not lost. You can see the difference

Shallow fried cauliflower popcorns.

This is the second time I have tried to cook something that has a light flour coating in the air fryer and it just doesn’t seem to crisp up the same. I had an air fryer a few years ago, and it did all these kinds of things beautifully. However it was a larger flatter model. So I’m wondering if this makes a difference? If anyone has any tips, please let me know. Otherwise this function may only be used for chips or roasting potatoes. The learning curve continues.

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