Easy Home Chips (Fries)
I used to have a fear of deep frying. And then I discovered this simple technique for making the most wonderful potato chips (fries).
takes: 30 minutes
oil to cover
1. Scrub potato and slice into your preferred chip shape. Pat dry with paper towel and place in a large saucepan.
2. Cover with oil and place over a medium high to high heat. Bring to an energetic simmer and let them cook away without touching them.
3. After 5-10 minutes when the chips start to go a little brown, you can give them a stir to remove any stuck to the bottom of the pan.
4. Continue to simmer rapidly until they’re a good chip colour. 15-25 minutes all up.
5. Scoop out with a slotted spoon and drain briefly on a rack or cake cooler above a tray of paper towel.
6. Sprinkle generously with salt and eat asap.
potatoes – floury varieties such as sebago, king edward or idaho are best for giving that super crisp exterior and fluffy centre. But that being said, waxy potatoes have great flavour. There’s no reason why other root veg like sweet potato or parsnip wouldn’t work. I just haven’t tried.
oil – my current favourite oil for frying is rice bran oil. Peanut oil is also good. Anything that is stable at high temperatures (also called a ‘high smoke point’) is ideal. Avoid olive oil unless you like weird olivey flavoured chips.
2 step frying – if you prefer to make your chips in advance that can easily be done. Cook until the oclour is only just starting to brown. Then remove from the oil and cool on a rack. When you’re ready to reheat, cook in hot oil until they go a deeper golden colour.
Waste Avoidance Strategy
potatoes – will keep for months in the pantry in a brown paper bag or hessian sack to protect from the light and allow them to breathe. Avoid plastic bags as they can encourage the potatoes to sweat and go green and no body likes sweaty spuds! If your potatoes have gone green, you’ll need to throw them out.
oil – keeps in the pantry.
OK if you like cold chips. See the ‘2 step’ process above if you’d like to cook ahead of time.
Problem Solving Guide
too bland – season with salt & pepper. Next time try a different variety of potato.
falling apart – probably a sign that you’ve tried to stir them too early, before they start to form a crust. Next time resist the urge until you’re sure they’re starting to brown.
burning – the colour can go from pale golden to burnt surprisingly quickly. Make sure you keep a close watch on them.
greasy – if the temperature doesn’t rise quickly enough the chips can go a little soggy. Next time use a more aggressive heat.
undercooked inside – either you’ve cut the chips too fat or the temperature was too high so the outsides cooked before the heat reached the middles.
I love them with lots of sea salt and a good quality mayo on the side. Great anywhere you’d normally have chips.