Introduction: Big Apple Freedom Fries
I read about the apple fries you can get at Legosworld (ok, really LEGOLand because everyone knows there is no such thing as Legos) but you know you can take it a step beyond. Here I am infusing this dish with a taste of Little Italy by cementing on an Italian cookie crumb crust. And what the, hey, it's fried.
Italian cookies have anisette which has a distinctive slightly licorice flavor. It goes well with a strong coffee or espresso. And the whipped cream dipping sauce with this is an added bonus. Make a batch with mascarpone cheese to mimic the best part of a cannoli. Instead of granny smith apples, I think these were gala apples. I used whatever was on sale. I didn't want this ible to come off sounding too sour and bitter. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
CAUTION: Cooking involves cutting, chopping, deep fat frying and cleaning up. The hardest part is cleaning up.
Step 1: To Market, to Market...
You will need some apples.
Any firm cooking apple will do. The frying seems to intensify the sweetness so you really don't need to add any extra sugar or go with a more tart variety of apple if you don't like that "This kool-aid is so sweet my teeth hurt" experience.
You will need a few cookies to make the crumb coating. Actually, pick a kind you like, oatmeal, animal crackers, peanut butter, anything...
Cornstarch to help glue the cookie crumb coating
Egg for egg wash to help glue the cookie crumb coating
Facilities and maybe supervision to deep fry
Whipped cream for dipping, can be fresh, aerosol can or imitation
Cinnamon for dusting, no challenge here
Step 2: A Little Prep Work...
Wash and peel your apples.
Cut up your apples so that you can remove the pits and core.
Slice into french fry size pieces.
Since you have a few more steps to do, I placed the cut up pieces in a bowl and splashed them with some orange juice. You could also use a bit of lemon juice if you have that handy. That keeps the sliced apples from turning an unappetizing brown before you get to cook them.
Create your cookie crumb coating.
I put a few cookies into a plastic bag and crushed them with a meat mallet. You should make fairly fine crumbs so they will stick better.
I had the regular cookies and one that was a darker chocolate color so I made two separate batches of crumbs.
Step 3: Batter Up...
Drain your apples if you used a lot of orange juice.
Dust all over with cornstarch.
Beat an egg and pour into the floured pieces to coat.
You could do the traditional step by step breading with each piece but that would be too much work.
You can then drop a few apple pieces into the cookie crumb bag to shake and bake.
I think it may be better to do this in an open bowl since the excess moisture from the apple pieces made the cookie crumbs congeal faster in the bag.
Coat all of your pieces and be sure you have enough crumbs to coat or else you end up with a lumpy coating.
Step 4: Cooking With Gas...
Heat your oil up to around 350 degrees F.
The oil temperature can be a little lower since the sugars and the cookie crumbs make it brown faster.
Drop your coated pieces gently into the hot oil
Give them plenty of room and when they start to brown, you can flip them over in the oil or stir to cook evenly.
When done to your liking, remove the pieces and drain on paper towels.
Serve with a dollop of whipping cream. Dust with cinnamon sugar, powdered sugar or cinnamon for garnish.
Pumpkin freedom fries, anyone?