Saturday my alma mater, Florida State University, had a football game and as everyone in the South knows — College Football is a religion. The weather was nice, almost 80 degrees, so we needed some foods that would stand up to everyone coming-and-going and munching as they wanted.
We had four teenage boys over and potato chips seem to be quite popular with that crowd. How do you know if your chips turned out good or if they were just another plate of fried potatoes? When four, 13 year old boys devour the chips before anyone else gets to try one, then you can assume the chips were at least “okay”.
The biggest problem people seem to have when making homemade potato chips is that the chips turn out like fried potatoes. There are 2 precautions that you can take to prevent fried potatoes:
- Don’t slice the chips too thick.
- After slicing the potatoes, soak in water for 3 to 4 hours. This draws-out the starch and helps to make the chips crispy when deep fried. You can actually feel that the raw potato slices have become more rigid when you remove them from soaking.
- Jumbo Russet potatoes. If you are cooking for teenagers, I recommend at least 1 potato for each kid.
- Your favorite oil for deep frying. I use Canola oil.
- Seasonings for the potato chips. It can be as simple as salt or something a little different. We used Kosher salt and Chipotle Dry Rub seasoning for today’s chips.
1. Wash potatoes. You can peel or leave the peel on. My son is a bit picky, so I removed the peels.
2. Slice the potatoes. I used this old grater that I have had since the dinosaurs were still here. The slicer in the middle provides the perfect thickness, about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. Some people prefer a mandolin slicer. These are adjustable slicers that you can adjust for a more precise thickness.
3. Slice potatoes and place in a bowl of water. Next, place in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours.
4. Heat deep fryer to about 375 degrees. While the deep fryer is heating, pat the potato slices dry with paper towels. Water and oil do not mix!
5. I have a small deep fryer and I tend to include too many potato slices in the basket at a time. You can take a fork and carefully separate any chips that are sticking together.
6. Depending on how many times I lifted the top to the deep fryer and the amount of slices I fried at a time, cooking time varied between 9 and 12 minutes per batch. The oil tended to stop bubbling as the chips become done.
7. Remove the chips from the deep fryer and let drain on paper towels.
8. Season the potato chips. This is part of the adventure.
You can change the flavor of your potato chips by varying the seasoning. Football season goes on for a few more weeks. We would love to get some new ideas for seasoning the chips. What seasoning do you use?