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Types of French Fries

Potatoes are so versatile they can be used in nearly everything from appetizers to dessert.  There are an amazing number of potato recipe variations out there, but today we’re going to talk about the French fry. Humble though it may be, the beauty of the potato shines through with these culinary creations.

Buying your potatoes fresh and creating French fries from them will always beat getting bags of frozen French fries delivered to your doorstep. Why is it better to use fresh potatoes?

  1. Customers love fresh and handmade, and they’re willing to pay more for the feeling that someone made those fries especially for them.
  2. You have more choices in how those potatoes are cut.  This gives you the chance to create new styles of cut – ones which are unique to your business.
  3. You have a choice over what types of potatoes that you use when you choose fresh.  Are you going to go with the Yukon Gold? Sweet potato curly fries? All of that’s up to you.

While we’ve seen a lot of fry variations, these are the five standard types of fries that you’ve seen the most in restaurants.  Just remember – even though it’s a simple concept, you can still run the gamut from down home to gourmet.

Home Fries

Home fries offer the best of both worlds between soft and crisp.  Start your fries off by boiling them, then drop them in the skillet when they’re half-done.

Potato Wedges

Potato wedges are normally seen as simple wedges of potato with their skins intact.  The challenge in deep frying these right is to get the outside at the right crispness while making sure that the inside is properly cooked.

Shoestring Potatoes

These potatoes are cut very thin and then deep fried until they’re crispy.  The Steak and Shake chain restaurant serves up shoestrings.

Curly Fries

Delicious, wonderful curly fries.  These are cut in a spiral slicer then deep fried to a golden brown.  They also tend to be heavily spiced, and can come with a phalanx of dipping sauces.

Square Cut Fries

These are your standard square cut fries that you’ll see in most fast food restaurants. Subtle seasoning or bold sauces are what set them apart from each other.

For a little inspiration, here are some of USA Today’s selection of the top French fry places in the US.

  1. The Breslin Bar and Dining Room, New York City
  2. Balthazar, New York City
  3. Hot Doug’s, Chicago
  4. Blue Duck Tavern, Washington DC
  5. Bourbon Steak, Miami, FL
  6. The Spotted Pig, New York City
  7. The Original Hot Dog Shop, Pittsburgh

So, when you’re thinking about root vegetables, it’s time to think about the potato.  Easy to grow, versatile to cook, and wonderful to eat, it’s time to think about potatoes and your next meal of French fries.

Special thanks go out to Scott Ableman on Flickr for the Creative Commons use of his picture.

2014-08-28 00:00:00
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