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How To Prepare French Fries

Q:

What is the best way to prepare french fries?

A:

For the best hand-cut Idaho® French fry yield, we recommend using U.S. grade No. 1 fresh Idaho® Potatoes, 7-15 oz. packed 90 to 70 count in 50 lb. cartons or 12 oz. and larger No. 2 potatoes packed in paper bags. Fresh, unpeeled potatoes for frying should be stored in a dark, cool area, preferably at 55°F. Do not refrigerate, as temperatures below 42°F cause potato starch to turn to sugar. Check the cutting blades, replace if jagged.

Keep the skin on to enhance homemade appearance and flavor. Fries made from peeled potatoes should be chilled after cutting in cold water for 30 minutes to 2 hours before frying to ensure maximum crispiness., Add citrus acid or vinegar to the water solution to prevent darkening. Spin-dry before frying to avoid spattering and reduce fat absorption.

1b

Fresh fries are best blanched. Get a crispier finished fry by blanching potatoes in hot oil to precook before peak periods and then finish in a final fry before serving. Fries are completely cooked during the blanching stage at a lower temperature to allow the potato to cook slowly without becoming golden brown. After blanching, allow fries to cool to room temperature or, preferably, refrigerate in uncovered containers before the final fry to a golden brown.

Idaho® Fry Tips

  • Hold at 300°F in a warming cabinet or at 100°-120°F under a heat lamp never for more than 10 minutes.
  • Underfrying, salting too soon, and leaving a basket over the fryer too long will result in poor texture and limp fries.
  • To prevent excessive oil usage, drain baskets by shaking lightly or increase frying temperature.
  • A study by Johnson & Wales University College of Culinary Arts showed the best potatoes for fresh French fries are the Idaho® Russet Burbank variety.
  • When frying the Norkotah variety, allow for more cook time by reducing the temperatures for blanching or finish frying.

1a