Consistently good results, easy to use and straightforward cleaning mean the Tefal Easy Pro FR333040 Semi-Professional Fryer is a smart choice if you currently have a smaller model you want to upgrade. Beginners may find its lack of guidance frustrating, plus it doesn’t include much in the way of extra features. However, as a reliable fryer that won’t take up a lot of space, it’s a great-value buy.
- Integral metal filter
- Fully dismantles for cleaning
- Only partially dishwasher-safe
- No timer
- Lack of frying guidance
- Review Price: £54.99
- 3l capacity
- 1.2kg food capacity
- H25.5 x W15 x D36cm
Finding a space for a chunky deep fat fryer in a busy kitchen can be like a game of appliance Tetris – fortunately, the slim design of the Tefal Easy Pro Semi-Professional Fryer makes the task far more achievable.
This neat, stainless-steel package will happily slot in below wall units when not in use, and takes up minimum worktop when it is.
While a compact appliance would usually limit your frying ambitions, here the capacity is only slightly less than much bigger models; the bowl’s depth more than making up for a lack of width. This means you can fry pieces of fish or make a mountain of fries without the headache of cluttering your surfaces or crowding your cupboards.
Tefal Easy Pro FR333040 Semi-Professional Fryer – What you need to know
- Homemade chips test – Chips browned consistently, but they emerged soft overall, with only smaller pieces crisping up
- Fish test – The batter crisped and bubbled well, while the fillet cooked evenly and didn’t fall apart
- Doughnuts test – There was plenty of space to drop in doughnuts and they fried to browned perfection in five minutes
Design – A great balance of capacity, function and price
Almost everything about the Tefal Easy Pro marks it out as a good first fryer. It splits apart for easy cleaning (although the lid isn’t dishwasher-safe); it takes up barely any space in a kitchen; and it has a relatively low price for the robust build quality and ease of use on offer.
However, there isn’t a lot of guidance to get you started – diagrams, a lack of recipes and a brief guide to cooking times and temperatures for food types only cover the basics of chips, fish, chicken and breaded snacks.
The design is appealingly simple. There’s a control unit with an immersed element that heats the oil quickly (in testing, it reached 170ºC in less than five minutes from cold) and slotted into the base, an enamelled bowl, basket and removable lid. This last part includes an integral filter (so there’s no need to change it or wash separately) and a large viewing window – although this steamed up every time whilst frying.
While the separate lid presented a problem with regards to where it should sit when placing food in and out of the fryer (plus a potential wet patch on the worktop), having it completely out of the way made accessing the bowl easier. The filter worked well – rather than steam escaping around the edges of the lid, it emerged from the filtered section, although fried smells still lingered in the kitchen for a day or so.
There are some other thoughtful features, too, such as a handle either side of the base for carrying, a well-marked dial for setting the temperature (the range is between 150-190ºC) and “Cool Zone” technology. The latter keeps the area of oil under the element cooler than the rest to help prevent food debris burning at the bottom of the bowl – less build-up making for both easier cleaning and food that tastes as it should. In testing, this proved to be a real asset – while there was only minor debris from the fish batter, it wiped away easily rather than becoming a burnt clump.
Performance – Even results, but food could be crisper
All the foods I fried came out from the oil beautifully golden-brown and evenly cooked. The only disappointment was a lack of crispiness to the fresh chips, except for the smaller pieces. However, this could probably be resolved by double or triple frying.
Note, though, that the fryer requires a full 3l (rather than the minimum 2.8 litres) of oil to fry effectively, ensuring food is thoroughly submerged – you’ll need to keep enough in stock.
Considering the Tefal Easy Pro FR333040 Semi-Professional Fryer is slim and compact, the power it requires can be a surprise. Its fast heating and semi-pro design demand a high wattage, so if you’re using it for a long time regularly, it’s likely that you’ll see a slight bump in your energy bills.
In addition, the stainless-steel exterior and boxy design may not be for everyone. Fortunately, its size means that it can be stored away in a cupboard if it jars with the rest of your kitchen.
Semi-pro also means it doesn’t come with many of the handy extras found accompanying deep fat fryers intended for domestic kitchens. These include such items as a timer, hinged basket to slowly lower food into the oil, and an easy way to drain the oil after use. I found that pouring it out of the bowl was awkward and created several splashes on the worktop. Clean-up was fairly straightforward otherwise; the lid and element required hand-washing, but the rest of the components were dishwasher-safe.
Should you buy the Tefal Easy Pro FR333040 Semi-Professional Fryer?
It’s estimated that you can make five portions of food in the Easy Pro’s basket, and while this might be five less-than-generous portions, it’s still sufficient for a small family or a couple. Where the capacity might be more limiting is for larger families or entertainers, who might be better off with a larger model, such as the Russell Hobbs Digital Deep Fryer 24580.
The Tefal Easy Pro is also a good fit for solo households who fancy deep-fried treats from time to time, but don’t have space for a large fryer – although, as before, the depth of oil required is more than most people are likely to have to hand.