This is what you need:
- large potatoes
- deep-frying oil
- fry-cutter with wide grid.
A favorite in fast food restaurants, but easy to make at home.
Belgian fries are generally slightly thicker-cut than the American 'French' fries. Most importantly, they are fried twice—1st time at 350 ºF, the 2nd time at 380-400 ºF— with a cooling period in between. The result is fries that are crisp on the outside but soft and steaming hot on the inside.
Baking the same fries in a single stretch will make the inside much drier.
Use a deep-frying oil with high smoking point. I will not use corn oil for fries. I don't like the smell when it is heated. I like beef tallow best for fries, but Marielos doesn't care too much for that. I prefer grape seed or peanut oil for vegetable oils.
This is what you need:
Pic2: heavy-duty fry-cutter
2017-08-08Pic5-7: a larger deep-fryer
2020-04-08, shown with crinkle friesPic14-16: 1st bake + cooling
Pic17-19: 2nd bake
I haven't bought potatoes as often since 2019, just don't eat that many anymore.
And for fries, I now buy 5-lb. bags of crinkle fries. I find they brown better than the straight-cut fries. But I still use the double-shift frying method as shown above.
3 different datesPic20-22: crinkle fries with Flemish beef stew
2020-04-08: with cheesePic23-25: crinkle fries with cheese
This is how Marielos makes her fries when she gets a craving. She cuts them by hand, much finer than I care for and Spanish-fries them stovetop in a frying pan with about 3/4" of oil.
The good thing about this method is that it uses a lot less oil than a deep-fryer.
On the other hand, I don't care very much for these 'shoe-string' fries. When fried until brown, they are completely dried out inside. I prefer my fries with soft, steaming potato inside.
2020-03-31Pic26-28: Spanish-frying potatoes
Kitcheneering experiment # 238. Not a great success.
As already stated above, potatoes should be parboiled at least 5 minutes before deep-frying them, so they can absorb salt during the cooking. The potatoes should not be boiled to the point they turn to flour when tossed. (Pic34) Keep them firm, that you don't contaminate the frying oil too much.
These pieces are considerably thicker than potato fries and when started raw require longer cooking times than fry-cut potatoes. The center of the potatoes still taste saltless because it cannot be absorbed. Also, unlike fry-cut potatoes, the larger pieces do not come floating at the surface when done, so it may be a bit more difficult to determine when they are done.
2020-04-10Pic29-31: first pass 5 minutes
Pic32+33: second pass, 6-8 minutes