My oldest son, Dylan, is constantly testing my culinary knowledge. He’s five so he’s really the only one of my children who understands that I went to school to learn how to cook. He is often asking what I can and cannot cook and seems to enjoy stumping me when I begrudgingly admit that no, I did not learn how to make fruit snacks or gum in culinary school.
However, the other day he asked me if I knew how to make French fries. “Of course, I do!” I responded. And so here we are. A recipe for homemade fries that is so simple and delicious that you’ll wonder why you ever bought a frozen bag from your local supermarket or hit the drive-thru on the way home. The best part about these fries is that they are fried in two steps to ensure a light and airy inside, with a perfectly golden and crunchy outside. The two step frying process also allows you to freeze them after the first fry. They can then be fried or baked on a different day. My kids loved them and I survived another one of Dylan’s culinary challenges.
Homemade French Fries
- 5 pounds russet potatoes
- Vegetable or peanut oil, for frying
- Sea or kosher salt
- Peel the potatoes. Cut the potatoes into ½ inch pieces and then slice into ½ inch sticks.
- Place the potatoes into a bowl and cover with water. Soak for at least 30 minutes, up to 24 hours. If soaking for longer than a few hours, place the bowl into the refrigerator.
- Heat several inches of oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- While the oil heats, remove the potatoes from the water and blot dry with paper towel.
- When the oil reaches 300 degrees, add a handful of potatoes, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Cook for 3 – 4 minutes. Remove the potatoes from the oil and let them drain on a rack or paper towels. Continue working in batches until all of the potatoes are fried.
- ***At this point, the potatoes can be frozen in a single layer on a sheet pan. Once frozen, they can be transferred to a freezer bag and fried at a later time. Keep fries frozen and follow instructions below or bake on a rack on a sheet at 400 degrees for 15 – 17 minutes until hot and golden brown.***
- If frying right away, heat oil to 375 degrees.
- Working again in batches, add the potatoes and fry for 5 – 7 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oil and salt immediately while letting drain on a rack. Continue until all the potatoes have been fried.