Sunday, January 27, 2013

Triple Cooked French Fries (Chips)

So, forget for a moment that the the photo of above is not simply french fries, and is in fact Poutine with beef brisket, and focus on the simply the fries in the photo. Once you make these fries, you can use them for a myriad of applications, including fries supreme; with chili, sour cream, cheese, and green onions and such. Or simply enjoyed without any adulteration. Which in the case of these fries, might be advisable, because they really are that good. The technique is taken from high level master chef Heston Blumenthal and is simple, but perhaps more labour intensive than most people would expect from a way to make french fries. However, as he says about his fries, they have a wonderful glassy exterior, and a fluffy interior, and they almost instantly shatter and dissolve in your mouth, delivering wonderful potato flavour.


Deep Frying Oil (Corn, Grapeseed, Sunflower, Safflower, Canola, Avocado)

This works best with dry type baking potatoes. In Canada, the best choices are White Potatoes, Russet, Yukon Gold. Do not use Redskin, Russian Blues, or any other highly starchy boiling potatoes.

1. Peel potatoes then cut into consistent thickness planks then cut planks into consistent sized batons. You're cutting french fries. Cut them the way you like your fries, but be consistent with the way you cut them to make it easier to cook them evenly. Place batons in a saucepan of cold water and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the handle of a spoon or fork easily penetrates the fries with little effort.

2. Remove from heat and carefully remove the fries from the water and drain them in a sieve or a colander. The fries are extremely delicate at this point, be very careful not to break them. After draining them, line them on a tray lined with parchment paper and place them in the fridge for 30 minutes to cool. 

3. Heat a saucepan of oil to 150C (300F) and cook the cooled fries until lightly golden. This usually takes about 3 minutes. Cook in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding oil. Be quick in putting in the fries, but be careful not to burn yourself. Remove fries and drain on a paper towel lined tray, then chill in the fridge again for 30 minutes on a clean tray. If you are serving these fries later, you can do up to step three ahead of time, and leave the last step until just before serving. 

4. Heat a saucepan of oil to 190C (375F) and cook the cooled fries from step 3 until golden. Again, cook in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the oil. Remove fries from oil, toss in a bowl with salt, serve.

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