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How Do I Keep My Potato Chips Light In Color?

Q:

Hi, I am trying to make potato chips, the thin crunchy type that are sold in supermarket, but I have a big problem, when fry them until all water is gone and they are crunchy and they become very dark in color. The chips sold in the supermarket are blond in color. No matter what I do, different potatoes, different temperature, soak in water, nothing works. If you could tell me the secret I would really appreciate it. Help me please!

A:

The secret to the light-colored potato chips is the variety of potato used by the larger potato chip producers. They use any of several ‘Chip’ stock varieties. These high-solid, low-sugar utility-looking potatoes are generally not available in retail stores. From your description you’re likely now using a russet variety, which is higher in sugar content. The low-sugar chip varieties do not darken, or caramelize nearly as much, while the russet varieties will be a noticeable darker color chip after frying. This is a matter of preference, and many independent chip manufacturers use a russet successfully even though the final product has a darker appearance. Both chips taste great, again it’s just a matter of preference. The chip variety used by manufactures are generally not available to the public and many varieties are proprietary. However, if you have access to a local foodservice distributor the produce buyer may be able to sell or procure a chip-variety for you to try.