French Fries are one of my favorite ways to serve potatoes. They're salty, crunchy and soft all in one bite! Serve them as a appetizer, or a side to any meal because their possibilities are endless. Unlike many fatty, deep fried foods, they do need a little extra care other then simply frying to come out perfectly cooked. This instructable will show you the hidden techniques to a perfect fry: soft on the inside and crunchy on the outside, every time!
Step 1: Prepping the Potatoes
- Wash and scrub the potatoes. Place the washed potatoes on paper towels to dry. If you want to peel the skin, do that once they're dry. I'm making a rustic potato so I'm leaving the skin on.
- Using a mandolin set at 7mm, carefully slice the potatoes. Make sure to use your mandolin carefully and properly. They are EXTREMELY sharp and can cause a lot of damage to your hand if not.
- Soak the potato wedges in cold water for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. This step removes extra starch and helps the fries cook with a nice crisp finish. Skipping this step will leave you with wilted and squishy fries.
- Drain and rinse the fries to remove any extra starch and lay them on paper towels to dry.
Step 2: Deep Fry Step 1
- In a high edged pan, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 300 degrees F. I recommend using a candy thermometer to monitor the heat. If you have an actual deep firer, that's even better!
- Drop the fries into the heated oil slowly and carefully. You want to cook in batches to keep the oil temperature accurate.
- Mix the fries occasionally so they do not stick together and cook for 3-5 minutes.
- Remove the fries using a slotted spoon and allow to dry and cool on paper towels.
- Repeat cooking and drying until all of the fries have cooked.
- Allow the fries to come to room temperature before proceeding to Deep Fry Step 2.
Step 3: Deep Fry Part 2
**It's extremely important to fry the potatoes in two different steps. The first step cooks the potatoes while the second step makes them nice and crunchy. If you skip the first step, you will have burnt fries or plain old under cooked potato stick things. If you skip the second step, you will have soft, squishy and EXTREMELY oily "fries"**
- Once the fries have returned to room temperature, up the heat of the oil to 400 degrees F. This is where they will get their crunchy outside. CAREFULLY add the cooled fries to the oil in batches and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. It's important you are gentle as the fries will be soft and limp before they get their second fry.
- Gently remove the fries, draining well before placing in a large bowl.
- Quickly add a pinch of salt to each batch of fully cooked fries while piping hot and gently toss the fries. If you are using another seasoning, now is the time to use it vs the salt. The extra oil on the fries will help the seasoning stick. Make sure to season the fries right out of the oil or your seasoning will not properly stick to the french fries.
Step 4: Serve and Devour!
Lets be honest, these little guys take a bit of work to make but they are totally worth the effort! Serve your fries as soon as possible to retain their warm, crunchy exterior. Here I have served basic salted fries with plain ketchup but feel free to use whatever sauce that you like! Enjoy your tasty hard work!!!
**Make sure to refrigerate leftover fries for another day. I'll show you how to heat and crisp up old fries the next day in a jiffy that taste almost as good as a batch right out of the oil!**
Step 5: How to Re-Heat Fries
So, everyone knows heating up even the best fries in the microwave leaves just an oily mushy potato thingy. I don't even have words for how they come out- but that's no shock. BUT! You can re-heat them in two ways and salvage that crispy layer!
Option 1: This is my favorite option if you own an Air-Fryer. Pop a small portion in your Air-Frier and cook it for 3 minutes at 400 Degrees F, shaking half way through. They won't be as great as the fresh ones, but they WILL be crunchy and sure won't disappoint your taste-buds!
Option 2: This option is less effective for even heating of old fries but works pretty good. Spread the fries on a baking sheet in a line that fits under the broiler flames. Put them in the oven on a high broiler setting and broil for about 3-4 minutes, flipping half way through to ensure even heating.
I hope you can enjoy home-made fries as much as I do! Happy eating, friends!!