The elusive perfectly crisp baked fry. I’ve been chasing it for years.
There was the slice into circles and spray both sides with cooking spray phase, the spend far too long cutting into matchsticks phase and most recently, giving up on the “fry” look altogether and just roasting in cube form phase.
They all had their downfalls for one reason or another and none really tasted like a legit fry with that perfect crisp exterior and soft inside. I had pretty much all but given up on hopes of finding a simple recipe that didn’t require hours of soaking or a deep fryer, neither of which I was willing to succumb to. And then, I saw Kathryne’s post. It’s like the clouds opened up and beams of sun came out. 10 minutes of soaking? I can handle that. Parchment paper, oil for tossing and a low rack in the oven? Simple!
I think I was one of the first comments on that post saying I was going to try it out. And I did. About 5 times over in the 10 days since it was published. In my defense, I had 2 CSA bunches in that timeframe both with potatoes that came with the disclaimer “they’re from last year so once they see light, they’ll start to sprout”. Using them immediately seemed like a better option than finding a dark, damp place for them to hide out in my house.
Despite the smoke alarm going off 3 out of the 5 times and Ginger hiding in the laundry room each and every time, these are hands down the most perfectly crisp baked fry I’ve ever tasted.
While the plain are pretty amazing themselves, I opted to spice things up a bit with some seasonings and fresh rosemary. I know most people think of rosemary as a winter herb, but it’s growing like a weed in a pot on my front steps to point where it’s approaching the size of a small toddler. Something had to be done.
There’s so many possibilities. Garlic and truffle salt. Rosemary and parmesan. Scallions. Even cheddar would be amazing. Give me a week and I’ll probably have tried them all.
The only disappointing thing about these was running out of ketchup midway through and having to use salsa instead.
Not the same.
Method slightly adapted from Cookie and Kate
- 3 small russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into "fry-like" slices
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oi, divided
- salt & pepper
- ½ tablespoon rosemary + more for garnish, chopped
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- Preheat oven to 475 degrees and adjust a rack to the second slot from the bottom.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of oil and a pinch of salt & pepper.
- In a medium bowl, cover potato slices with hot water and let soak for 10 minutes.
- Drain potatoes and pat dry.
- Toss potatoes with remaining tablespoon of olive oil, cayenne, smoked paprika, cumin and additional salt & pepper.
- Spread out into an even single layer on the baking sheet and cover with foil.
- Bake for 5 minutes and then remove foil.
- Bake for another 10 minutes then rotate the pan.
- Bake for another 5 minutes then remove pan from oven, flip each fry individually and bake for 5 more minutes.
- Remove from oven, sprinkle with more salt & pepper to taste and garnish with additional rosemary.
- Enjoy immediately.