Friday, May 3, 2013

Perfect Homemade French Fries

Perfect Homemade French Fries
If we are having a good day we love to eat french fries, on a bad day we like to indulge in french fries. It is a simply delicious item we all seem to have a love for, young or old. Usually one of the first items we give our kiddos to enjoy when they are babies and probably where the love begins. But not all french fries are created equal, there are plenty of shapes, sizes, and good or bad varieties. This recipe will show you how to make the perfect french fry to accompany any main dish. With these simple steps you will have your family asking for them every night. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce and place next to your scrumptious main dish and enjoy!

Ingredients
-5 to 6 large Idaho potatoes, cleaned (peeled or unpeeled)
-Vegetable oil, for frying
-1 Tablespoon salt (for soaking potatoes)
-1 Tablespoon white vinegar (for soaking potatoes)
-Salt, to taste (for seasoning)

Directions
For a French-fry cut, peel or leave peel on the potatoes and slice lengthwise.

Halved Potatoes
Length Wise
Halved Potatoes
Length Wise
 Once the potato is halved, turn onto its flat side and cut it into 1/3-inch-thick slices.

Potato Cut into 1/3-inch thick Slices
After the first slices are made, stack the slices on top of one another (a few at a time, making sure they are flat on the board) and slice lengthwise into 1/3-inch-thick strips. Repeat this until all the potatoes are prepared.

Potato cut lengthwise into 1/3-inch thick Strips
1/3-inch thick Strips
1/3-inch thick Strips
Once the potatoes has been made into french fry shapes, you will have to begin soaking. Sliced potatoes can turn brown quickly. Take your pre-cooked french fries and place in a large bowl or measuring cup. Run water threw them 2 to 3 times, draining as you go to rinse some starch off them.

Rinsing Potatoes Strips
Once they have rinsed and been drained, add in your vinegar and 1 Tbsp salt and refill with water to cover. Soak the pre-cooked fries for at least an hour. You can soak the fries for a few hours or even over night. This process makes for a crisper fry.

Strips topped with 1 Tbsp Salt & Vinegar
Soaking Potato Strips
When you’re ready to cook the fries, drain them and place on a sheet tray lined with paper towels and pat dry.
Drained Pre-Cooked French Fries
Dried Pre-Cooked French Fries
Once you have dried the potatoes thoroughly you are ready to start cooking. Heat a large, heavy bottom pot with oil to 300 degrees, using a thermometer to monitor the temperature.

*BE CAREFUL Frying, it can be dangerous. Make sure you have a fire extinguisher on hand and no little kiddos running around you*
Oil for Frying
Tempted to 300 Degrees
Once the oil has reached 300 Degrees, you will have to working in batches and add the potatoes. Fry the potatoes for about 4 minutes. 

(You can't fry them all at once, the oil will drop in temp and it won't cook the fries. The fries also get overly greasy and it does not make for a perfect fry. Patience is key!)

Blanch Fried French Fries
Once the fries have cooked and become soft, remove them from the oil using a slotted spatula or frying spider. Drain the blanched fries on new and dry paper towels. Keep doing this until you have fried all the potatoes at 300 degrees.

1st Batch of Blanched French Fries
Once you have blanched all the fries and they have drained, increase the heat of the oil and bring it up to 400 degrees. 

Fry Oil 2nd Batch 
Temping to 400 Degrees
Once the oil has reach 400 Degrees, place the fries back into the hot oil (in batches) and fry them for a second time until they are golden and crisp. Takes 2 to 4 minutes, depending on how brown and crispy you like them. 
Second Fry for French Fries
When the french fries look like they have been browned and crisped up to your liking, remove them from the oil. Like before, drain them on a sheet tray with (new and dry) paper towels and immediately sprinkle them with salt. When the oil is hot, the salt will stick to the fries. You can also add any other desired seasonings for a jazzed up french fry. Making them yourself is half the fun, making them your own is tastier! Serve along side your main dish or indulge in this treat on its own with your favorite dipping sauce. Enjoy!

-Amy