My name is Tess and I eat.
I also blog at Wipe Your Feet and The Emperor of Ice Cream.
Uses For Your Deep-Fat Fryer #305: Belgian Fries
This is how you make the dope fries in your deep fat fryer. I don’t do sauces for fries. I like my fries with salt and eaten immediately. If you want a sauce, may I point you toward this aioli? This method uses the old double-fry, first cooking the potatoes at a low temperature, then allowing them to reach room temperature, and then frying them again at 375 until crispy. They have a deep potato flavor, a rich dark color, and they’re floppy in the center after a few minutes at room temp. Kind of like the fries at the Hungry Cat. Only awesomer.
YOU WILL NEED:
A big container of oil. Bigger than you think. You want Canola.
5 medium-sized potatoes (Russett or Yukon Gold), scrubbed
SET UP YOUR WORKSPACE:
Other than your fryer, you will need 2 cookie sheets lined with dry paper towels (and many more paper towels on hand), a strainer set over a bowl, and a heatproof slotted spoon (if you don’t have a fry basket). You will also need a large bowl of ice water.
Set your fryer for 320 degrees. Make sure it reaches 320 again before you put a new batch of fries in — keep that in mind while you fry. Slice the potatoes, lengthwise; the thickness is really your call. Then cut into sticks. I did mine thin, and they were way good. Maybe you should trust me and slice yours into thin sticks too. Okay, now pop those tater sticks into the ice water to chill while you work. When all of your cut potatoes are in the water, change the water and add more ice a few times, until the water runs clear.
Drain the chilled potatoes and put them on one of your cookie sheets, blotting them dry. Now fry them in the 320-degree oil, in batches. Don’t overcrowd — I did about 5 batches, or a batch per potato. Allow to cook for 2-3 minutes, until the fries are floating and turning gold but NOT done in the center, then pop them onto your other cookie sheet lined with paper, to drain, while you work on the rest of your potatoes. When you’ve finished your last batch, crank the heat of your fryer up to 375 and go sit down somewhere nearby for at least 15 minutes while your fries come to room temperature. I don’t know why this is important, but it is. It was in a forum I read.
Fry your potatoes in batches at 375. Watch them carefully — they will turn from perfect to burned very quickly. My thin fries took about 3 minutes to achieve the deep golden brown I was looking for. When you’ve finished a batch, shake the fry basket (or scoop out with a slotted spoon, working as quickly as possible without killing yourself in the sideways rain of oil that may or may not be spraying at you) over the strainer you’ve set in a bowl, douse with salt, and then move to your serving container. Breeze through those batches like a pro. You’ve got this. When you’re done, sit down and eat them all. Eat them with Belgian beer and your fancy sauce or just coarse salt.
Try this now please.
1 box Jiffy cornbread mix
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/2 block of cream cheese, softened on low power for about 30 seconds in the microwave
Sprinkle of brown sugar
Sprinkle of salt
Preheat oven to 400 and grease a glass or ceramic loaf pan (or square pan). In a bowl, combine corn bread mix, egg, buttermilk, and cream cheese until well blended. Spread batter around evenly, then top with brown sugar and salt. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
What’s For Dinner?
Spaghetti with Pecorino Romano, Pancetta and Black Pepper
I’m stealing this recipe from this week’s The Week, but I’m adding pancetta because I am a wild and crazy lady.
The Week says: “This Roman dish is ‘the best quick meal’ we’ve ever tasted, said Yvonne Ruperti in Cook’s Illustrated. Though made with ‘just three main ingredients (cheese, pepper and pasta),’ it can still be tricky. To keep this ‘Roman spaghetti party’ from turning into a cheesy clump, we found a simple answer: add cream.”
6 oz Pecorino Romano, 2 cups finely grated and 1 cup coarsely grated
1 LB spaghetti
2 TBSP heavy cream
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tsp finely ground black pepper
A handful of pancetta, pan-fried until crisp
Place finely grated Pecorino Romano in medium bowl. Set colander inside large bowl. Bring 2 quarts water to boil in large Dutch oven. Add pasta and 1 1/2 tsp salt; cook, stirring frequently, until al dente. Drain pasta into colander, reserving cooking water. Pour 1 1/2 cups cooking water into liquid measuring cup and discard remainder; return pasta to now-empty bowl. Slowly whisk 1 cup of reserved pasta water into finely grated cheese until smooth. Whisk in cream, oil, and black pepper. Gradually pour mixture over pasta, tossing to coat. Add pancetta and toss again. Let pasta rest 1 to 2 minutes, tossing frequently, adjusting consistency with remaining pasta water. Serve, passing coarsely grated Pecorino Romano separately. Serves 4-6.