(3-4 cups vegetable oil in a medium pot)
1 large Vidalia onion (try to pick one that is long, not wide)
1 cup whole milk
2 Tbsp bacon drippings
3 crispy cooked bacon strips, finely minced
1 heaping cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp paprika
Bacon Ranch Dipping Sauce:
⅓ cup buttermilk
¼ cup sour cream
2 Tbsp mayo
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 Tbsp bacon drippings
2 crispy cooked bacon strips, finely minced
1 Tbsp minced fresh dill weed
1 Tbsp minced fresh parsley
Salt and fresh cracked black pepper
Preheat oil in a pot, over medium heat.
Peel and slice whole onion to create rings. Peel off the little, clear membrane that is in between the onion rings.
In a medium mixing bowl whisk milk, bacon drippings, flour, baking powder, paprika and salt together until smooth.
Crumble crispy bacon strips and then mince them as finely as possible with a knife. Add minced bacon bits into the batter and mix until evenly incorporated.
Dip a few onion rings into the batter, covering it completely, and gently add them to the heated oil, once at a time. Cook onion rings in batches until deep golden. You will want to cook over medium heat that way batter doesn't get dark too fast, leaving you with a raw onion inside. Cooking it on medium heat for a longer period of time will cook the onion inside.
For dipping sauce: whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl, until all incorporated. Make sure to use the same method for mincing bacon as you did for onion rings.