Even though cooking fries at home on the stove seems as such a straight-forward activity, it does require a little bit of skill if you want to end up with a tasty and healthy potatoes on your table. The instructions below are based on the premise that you cut your own potatoes for fries, and not use the blanched frozen potato fries from the grocery stores. The frozen fries have their own instructions on the package. Cutting and cooking your own fresh fries has nothing to do with the common conception that fries are not good for your health. This fries are totally awesome, and I would eat them every day if I had the chance.
1. Wash several large potatoes. You can either peel them or use them with the skin. Cut the potatoes on the desired thickness. You don't have to wash off the starch from the fresh-cut fries, but if you do so, make sure that you drain all the water from them. Oil and water are not very good friends, as you may know. I don't buy some special kind of potato; every kind works equally well for me. Now, if you want to fry sweet potatoes, the instructions are almost the same. The only difference if that I cut the sweet potatoes thinner and cook them for a shorter time, otherwise they get too much color.
2. Take a small cast-iron pot with a handle, or other pot with a heavy bottom, and pour about 1 1/2 cups of extra virgin olive oil in it. It has to cover about 1 1/2" from the bottom. Add 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to it, to make your fries even more healthy and tasty. It is not true that EV olive oil should not be used for deep-frying. It may be true for a commercial deep-fryer, but at home extra virgin olive oil is perfectly ok for this purpose, even better than the other vegetable oils. Price is also not an issue. One and a half cups of EV olive oil can cost you no more than 2 dollars and you can use it for at least 6 times, provided you fry only potato in it.
3. Heat the oil at high temperature for about 4 minutes, and add a few fries to test the readiness of the oil. If the fries start reacting to the oil, drop carefully the rest of the fries and stir gently. If the oil is not ready yet, wait until the tester fries start showing signs of frying, and then add the rest. Stir gently with wooden spoon from time to time. It usually takes about 16 minutes to cook the fries and give them a nice color. Remove the fries from the frying pan using stainless steel tongues. You don't have to, but you can remove the extra oil from the fries, by placing them on tissue paper for a couple of minutes.
4. Right after you take the fries from the pot, shake or grind some Himalayan salt on the fries. The sooner you use the salt, the better it sticks. I find that salt doesn't stick too good to cold fries.
With the Himalayan salt, you have everything healthy in your home-cooked fries, which is the opposite to the fast-food fries. Read my article about salt here.
About the author: George Krumov is a Red Seal certified chef with many years of culinary experience working around the world in Europe, the Middle East, the cruise line industry and North America. In the last two decades he has headed the kitchens of several restaurants in Canada, and ran his own restaurant.