Friday, October 10, 2008

On Frites...

Love me some steak frites. Problem is that double frying at home on the stove top is a huge pain in the ass and makes a helluva mess. I've been working on a solution that actually is working better for me than double-frying...

1st: I use russet potatoes, peel, and slice 3/8 inch with the mandoline and toss in water to remove the excess starch. I let soak atleast an hour with one change of water.

2nd: For the first cooking, drain the potatoes, dry with kitchen towel and toss with a tablespoon of your frying oil in a microwave safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and vent the top. Microwave on ~60% power for 5 minutes. Stir potatoes, recover and repeat.

3rd: Heat oil in your favorite frying vessel to 375 degrees. Blot potatoes well with lots of paper towels. Working in relatively small batches (don't want the oil to cool below 300) toss a big handful of potatoes with about 1 tsp of sifted corn starch (saw this on Tyler's Ultimate) until well-coated. Drop in the oil and fry until GBD. Drain on cooling racks and salt liberally. Keep warm in 200 degree oven until ready to serve...will get soggy if you wait more than 30 minutes.

Comment: the corn starch trick was genius! I generally try to follow classic recipes but without industrial frying equipment the frites always end up soggy. Give this a try and let me know what you think.


1 comment:

og said...

The microwave trick definitely works, I've done that. I've also done the blanch and refry. My problem with has always been that the potatoes get sticky, and clump together.
According to Bourdain, you're supposed to cool them in ice water, but then you've got a real mess on your hands, so I don't really know a good work around that except for maybe some lemon juice or something to retard oxidation. If you cut them thin enough, you don't need the double fry.
Also, just get a fryer, unless you have a nice hood. Which I don't. yet.