First of all, I’m just not that much of a French Fry fan. I think they’re okay, don’t get me wrong, and every once in awhile I have one that’s great. But that one great one ruins every other French Fry for me for a long time. And Frozen French Fries? I’m a hater. It’s a strong word, hater, but it’s true.
I have got to be in the minority, here. I think most of the US buys frozen french fries and scarfs them down by the trayful. Everyone I know does, anyway. There’s just something wrong with me. I’m missing a gene, I guess!
So the other day, I was going to make my fave Stupid Simple Sweet Potato Fries (I love those, by the way) when I could see rebellion in the folk’s eyes. They didn’t go so far as to grab weapons, but I’m smart enough to know when I’m outnumbered! And the light bulb went off. What if I used the method for my Sweet Potato Fries on the couple of Russets in the pantry?
It’s super easy and really just a little trick that you’d never guess would make such a difference. It worked like a charm. These might not compare to a just out of the fryer fry, but were every bit as good, if not better, than any frozen fry I’ve ever had. Gotta love that! And easy enough for any weeknight. Gotta love that, too.
Best of all, making your own eliminates a lot of the unsavory additives in frozen fries and home-made are a fraction of the cost – when you buy fries notice the package is labeled in ounces while potatoes are in pounds. That makes for a tricky comparison. Stupid Simple Fries take a little bit of effort to cut (a mandolin helps, here) but bake up in about the same time as a frozen fry.
Stupid Simple Fries
- 2 pounds Russet Potatoes, larger is better – about 2 large or three medium
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of cornstarch (I imagine if diet dictated you could use arrowroot)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Cut potatoes into fries, trying to be as even as possible in your cuts so they all bake at the same rate.
Place the fries in paper bag and shake with two tablespoons of cornstarch. (The amount you need might vary just a bit with the thickness and cut of your fries – they should be just lightly dusted with the cornstarch.) If you do happen to detect a slight cornstarch flavor on the fries, cut back a bit next time.
Place on two baking sheets (you don’t want to overcrowd or they won’t be crisp,) Drizzle with olive oil and toss until each fry has a very light coating. Use a judicious hand with the olive oil – you aren’t frying – just baking.
Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fry. Turn fries over, with a gentle hand (a thin spatula really helps.) I tend to rotate the outside fries to the inside of the pan and visa versa as I turn them. Bake for another five to 15 minutes or so.
The exact baking time is going to vary depending on the thickness of the fry. Keep a close eye on them, especially any “baby” fries that are smaller than the rest. A few brown spots are to be expected, but darker than that just does not taste as good.
I like to take my fries off the baking sheet and throw them on a rack if I’m not serving them all immediately so they don’t “steam” on the pan and ruin the crunch.
Sprinkle with salt while still warm.
I’ll be sharing this post at Fiesta Friday, hosted this week by Julianna @ Foodie on Board and Zeba @ Food For The Soul, as well as at Throwback Thursday.
To view the links or add your own at Throwback Thursday, click the frog, below!