Hand cut french fries are irresistible when done right. Could you honestly pass up a golden fry that is crisp on the outside, but fluffy on the inside? How many times have you’ve asked your dining buddies for just one fry? I’m guilty. If you make your own, you could have the perfect fry. You could make it just the way you like it. You could make them with the potato of your choice. Leave the potato skins on or peel them. The fries could be cut thin or thick. You could fry them in peanut oil or vegetable oil. They could be fried to a light golden brown or a darker golden brown. Your hand cut fries could be super crispy or floppy. You could eat them hot right out of the deep fryer or wait until they are cold. Plus, you could use different cooking techniques. You could fry them twice once at a lower temperature to cook the insides, and then at a higher temperature to crisp the outside. You could parboil the fries then fry them once at a high temperature. You could go the healthier route and skip the frying process altogether and bake the fries in your oven. If you are on a quest to find the perfect fry, why don’t you try your hand at it?
Of course french fries taste amazing with just salt sprinkled on them or a little ketchup, but have you ever tried them in a sandwich? Some big cities in the U.S. like Pittsburgh and Chicago have restaurants that specialize in serving lots of toppings on their french fry sandwiches. However, it’s not just a US thing; in England and Ireland, their french fry sandwich is known as a chip butty. In Ireland, they make chip butty sandwiches with Waterford blaa rolls. If you’ve never tried hand cut french fries this way, I encourage you to. We all need to break our diet once and a while and eat something just for fun.
Learn how to make hand-cut French fries with this recipe! You can turn your russet potatoes into fries that are crispy and golden—better than McDonalds. Season your fries and serve them with your favorite topping. Ketchup anyone?
- 6 large russet potatoes
- 6 pints peanut oil, for frying
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Rinse and peel the potatoes. Cut each potato in half lengthwise, then in quarters. Continue the cutting process until all the fries are cut. Try cutting them anywhere from 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch wide, which should yield 10 to 16 fries per potato. Discard the peels and any tiny pieces.
- Parboil the cut fries by placing them in a large pot and covering with water. Bring the pot to a boil, and then simmer for 4 minutes. This will help cook the center, so the fries cook faster during the frying process.
- Drain the french fries. Spread them out on a cookie sheet so they can steam dry for a few minutes.
- While the fries are steam drying, pour the peanut oil into a deep fryer and turn it on. If you don’t have a deep fryer, pour about 3 inches of oil into a large pot with high sides, like a dutch oven or a soup pot. You will want it to be a little less than half to make room for the hot oil bubbling when the fries are submerged. Believe me, you don’t want to have an overflow of hot oil on your stove. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot to read the temperature of the oil. It will take a while for the oil to heat up to 375 F.
- While the oil is heating, blot the french fries dry with paper towels. You want them to be dry before they hit the hot oil, so the oil doesn’t bubble up and overflow.
- When the oil is hot enough, carefully lower the french fries into the deep fryer or pot with a metal strainer or large slotted spoon. You’ll want to cook about two potatoes worth of french fries in each batch. I recommend lowering 8 to 10 fries on your metal strainer at a time, as the oil in your pot will bubble up where the fries were submerged. You’ll also notice that the temperature will drop when the french fries are submerged in the hot oil.
- Cook the french fries until they are the color you desire, turning them occasionally as they cook. It could take 8 to 10 minutes or longer per batch if the oil temperature in the pot drops too low. For safety, don’t leave the deep fryer or pot of oil unattended. Remove the fries a few at a time with a metal strainer, large slotted spoon, or a fork.
- Drain the cooked french fries on a cookie sheet that is double lined with paper towels. Sprinkle on salt while they are still hot.
- For best results serve immediately. French fries taste great served along side hamburgers, fried chicken, battered fish, or in a sandwich like the English chip butty or the Irish’s chip butty on Waterford blaa.
- Top the french fries with salt, ketchup, brown gravy, malt vinegar, salsa sauce, cheese sauce, HP sauce curry sauce, or cheese curds. Be creative!
- Use caution when working with hot oil. The oil is hotter than boiling water and can cause burns or kitchen fires. If you ever have a stovetop grease fire, never put water on the flames. Shut off the heat and cover the pot with a lid to cut off the oxygen supply. If neccesary, suffocate the flames with large quantities of baking soda. Keep a fire extinguisher on hand also and call the fire department for any serious fires.