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Cutting a large quantity of potatoes into fresh fries quickly.

Q:

I have a lot, as in 2000 pounds, of Idaho potatoes to cut into fresh fries each week. My guys are pretty quick at doing this, but is there an easier way? I am even willing to spend some money on a piece of equipment to make it more efficient.

A:

My favorite French fry cutter is the Keen Kutter brand. It’s been around forever and is very rugged, but can cost upwards of $300, so is not cheap. Watching the equivalent of a football team tackle or guard stab potatoes with a fork, place them in the wall installed cutter and then use muscle to make potato slices out of a bag of No. 2 potatoes is worthy of being on YouTube. Any volunteers from Five Guys or Elevation Burger or others to star in a video of potato cutting?

While at the National Restaurant Show in Chicago this year I saw a new product that had me drooling. It was just like the home made machine I first ran into in Las Vegas, where a former chef had built a business out of supplying nearby hotels with pre-cut fresh potatoes for finish blanching and frying. This machine had a foot pedal operated hydraulic push button to activate forward motion, push and release. In a matter of minutes whole cartons of potatoes were cut up by a woman who probably weighed 90 pounds.

However, at the show this version was even better. It had the pneumatic air pressure, a clear plastic guard to keep employees from leaving their hand in the way, was durable, with a variety of blade cut sizes and could be mounted vertically or horizontally on a counter top. Start thinking four figures for the costs. But at the same time, imagine being able to meet their claims of 720 potatoes in an hour and with the fatigue factor almost eliminated.

If you are a SERIOUS user of Idaho potatoes for fresh made French fries, then this is your machine. You could also call them, at 800-782-6761.

And if you are doing this kind of volume, you definitely need to visit this web site for the best in frying tips: www.fitfrying.com