How to cook perfect "french" fries
Beautifully crisp on the outside, feathery and fluffy on the inside. Not as difficult to make as they are to resist eating! Give it a try, you will never buy frozen or fast food fries ever again!
Gather potatoes. Many will tell you that you need a certain type of potato...to be honest, I just use what I have on hand! Just make sure that the starch or sugar content in the potato isn't very high
Prepare a big bowl by filling it with ice cold water and squeeze a lime (or lemon) and drop the citrus halves in the water. Make sure you have enough water to submerge the potatoes.
Start peeling. Many people like to eat the fries with their skins on (including myself) but this will not work with this method. The skin will become water-lodged and therefore result in soggy fries.
Once peeled, drop in the bowl of water and start peeling the other potato.
Cut into desired thickness. I like them slightly thicker than the average French "pomme frites", but thinner than the British "chips". Just make sure they are evenly cut so they cook evenly.
Submerge in water and start cutting the rest of the potatoes.
Submerge in water for 15-20 minutes to remove the starch.
Rinse well with cold water
Submerge again in a fresh batch of water
Refrigerate uncovered for a whole day...yes, 24 hours! I know, I know...hate me all you want now, but thank me later!
After 24 hours have passed, boil enough water to cover the potatoes. Do measure out how much water though. I used 3 liters (3 quarts or 12 cups) of water and added 3 Tablespoons of white vinegar to it
The vinegar will prevent the potatoes from getting mushy, it will provide texture. General rule of thumb, add 1 Tablespoon of vinegar for every liter or quart of water & add it just after water boils.
Drain potatoes and discard citrus halves.
Dump potatoes in the boiling water and vinegar solution.
Cover and boil on high heat for 6 minutes exactly, not more, not less. Use a timer!
Meanwhile, prepare an ice bath. That's just a big bowl filled with water and ice cubes.
Once the potatoes are cooked for 6 minutes, fish them out using a slotted spoon and drop them into the ice bath. Leave them there until they cool completely and are cool enough to touch.
Drain for the last time!
Arrange on a cooling wire rack. Best to arrange them in a single layer, but I only have this one rack and had too many potatoes, so I had to overlay them on each other. Oh well, you can't win em all!
Refrigerate and allow to dry for a whole day, yes that's another 24 hours...again, hate me and curse me now but thank me later.
Right, 24 hours later, heat oil in a pot or use a deep fryer. Oil should register to 140 deg C (280 F). Use an oil thermometer, mine broke, so I had to use my culinary experience ...lol!
Fry the potatoes in batches. This step is called "blanching" which means to cook without adding color, which is exactly what we're doing here. Just cook on medium low heat till soft, yet still pale.
As you can see, still pale, yet fully cooked on the inside. Drain on kitchen paper and allow to cool completely.
At this step, you can freeze the fries for next time you want them. To do that, arrange them on a single layer on parchment paper and freeze till solid, then put in a large freezer bag.
Heat oil again till it registers to 190 deg C (375 F)
Add fries in batches so you don't overcrowd the fryer and cool down the oil. Cook over high heat till golden brown and crisp, about 5 minutes.
Remove using a slotted spoon or one of those "spider" things!
Serve hot with (or without) your favorite condiments. Here I have chipotle mayonnaise and ketchup!
- Water, as needed
- 1.0 Lime or lemon
- Vinegar, depends on quantity of water
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Other seasonings (optional)
- Vegetable oil (3-4 cups)
- Patience (2 days worth) emphasis on "worth"