Yep, that’s what it says – three days. Nope, that’s not a mistake. The up side is these are the best darn diner fries going. The down side is that you need to be patient and plan ahead.
Remember me, I’m the crazy one that plans my meals weeks in advance. Nothing is ever carved in stone, of course, but I have a plan in mind. Even then, thinking days in advance to start preparing a dish wasn’t easy. I had reminders up all over the place – notes to myself. In the end, it was so worth the effort. My guys loved those fries. And served with Patty Melt Burgers, the only thing missing is the greasy spoon! That and maybe Chocolate Malts.
Besides, can you think of a better way to celebrate Julienne Fries Day? Okay, so mine aren’t actually “Julienne” cuts – you know those long, thin straw cuts, but the spirit is there. If you do use the traditional Julienne cut, the fries will cook up much quicker, so keep an eye on things.
Three-Day Diner Fries
3 lbs Russet Potatoes,
2 tablespoons Distilled White Vinegar
1 teaspoon additional Distilled White Vinegar
3 quarts Canola Oil
Kosher Salt to taste
Peeled and cut potatoes into long, slender fries. Place in a large casserole dish, cover with cold water, cover and refrigerate overnight.
Working quickly, remove the fries from the cold water, and drain off as much water as possible without breaking the fries. Discard the water, and place the fries in a large, wide, heavy-bottomed pot. Cover with 2 1/2 quarts of clean, cold water, and add the vinegar. Bring to a low boil for 6 minutes.
Note: The fries should be cooked through but not falling apart.
Remove the fries with a slotted spoon or spider onto a baking sheet fitted with a paper-towel-lined rack. Cool and dry the potatoes on the rack.
Once the potatoes are cool and dry, prepare your deep fryer. Heat the 3 quarts of canola oil in a large Dutch oven (at least a 5 quart). Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the fryer, and heat until the gauge reads 395 degrees.
Working in three batches, add the fries to the oil, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon or spider, remove the fries and place on another baking sheet fitted with a paper-towel-lined rack. Repeat with the rest of the fries until all of them have been blanched in the oil for 1 1/2 minutes.
Let the fries cool and dry on the rack for 1 hour, and then gently place them in a large, plastic food-storage container, being careful not to break the fries. Cover, and freeze overnight. Cool, strain and reserve the canola oil.
Note: The frozen fries can be stored for months, pulling out want you want when you want them. Fry all or just a handful.
The following day, reheat the reserved canola oil in the Dutch oven. Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the fryer, and heat the oil until the gauge reads 395. Working in three batches, add the fries to the oil, and cook until the fries are light golden in color, about 4 minutes. Agitate the fries with a slotted spoon or spider during the cooking process to ensure even cooking. Adding the fries will have lowered the temperature of your fryer so adjust as needed to maintain a temperature no more than 375 degrees.
Note: It is better for your fryer to be below 375 degrees rather than over it.
Remove the fries from the oil into a bowl or large plate lined with paper towels. Season all over with kosher salt, and serve at once.