Archive | 8:15 am

French Fries

7 Jul

What’s better than french fries?  Pretty much nothing, so then you have to get down to the nitty gritty and pick out which french fries are better than others.  It’s hard to beat the sweet potato fries from Father’s Office down the street here.  It’s also hard to beat good old McDonald’s fries fresh from the fryer.  The best, though, may be those you make at home.  They’re healthier, tastier, and surprisingly easy to make.

I do admit that I’ll need to give these a second go round, as I beat them up pretty badly while stirring too much as they were frying.  They ended up mostly little fried crispy ends, which, luckily enough are my favorite part of eating an order of fries, so I can’t complain that much!  They’re best eaten fresh, of course, so don’t bring them to a pot luck and try to time the rest of dinner accordingly.

Note: Unfortunately, because of the cold oil frying technique used, I’m told this recipe will not work with sweet potatoes or even normal Russet potatoes which are more commonly found in grocery stores than the Yukon Golds.  Regardless, you shouldn’t have much trouble finding the Yukons.

French Fries
adapted from Summer Entertaining 2011
serves 3 – 4

  • 2 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes (not the baby new potatoes; try to get at least palm-sized)
  • 6 cups peanut oil
  • good salt
  1. Slice the potatoes into french fry shapes, which is a lot easier than expected.  First of all, wash them but there’s no need to peel them (Yukon Gold skin is very thin). Slice off a thin slice from each of the 4 “sides” of the potato, so that it lies flat on the cutting board without rolling around.  Cut the potato vertically into 1/4″ slices, lay those slices flat, stacking them on top of each other, and cut vertically again into 1/4″ french fry sticks.
  2. Put peanut oil and sliced potatoes into a large pot.  Turn the burner on high so that the oil comes to a full rolling boil, which should be about 5 minutes. It’ll be hard, but don’t stir them for another 15 minutes, just let it boil.
  3. After 15 minutes are up, you can gently stir the potatoes, scraping up any that stuck to the bottom.  Keep cooking, stirring occasionally, until golden and crisp.  Summer Entertaining said it will be another 5-10 minutes.  I think mine took an extra 20 minutes at least and I have no idea why!  The fries were just chewy until they started to crisp up properly, so have patience, because they were worth the wait.
  4. Once golden, scoop out of the grease and place on a paper towel-ed plate to drain.  Now for a fancy chef trick, transfer the fries to a mixing bowl (metal is normally used), and sprinkle salt over them with one hand as you toss the fries around with the bowl in your other hand.  Feeling chefy already, right?
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