fresh cut french fries

who does fresh cut fries and what is your process?

I attemped fresh cut fries… cut a raw potato into about 3/8" wedges like a regular frozen fry and let sit in some cold water for a couple hours… then threw them into the fryer. They turn out extra brown in color but taste decent.

I’ve been trying to find better ways to “hold” the fries for a few days then fry them but to no success.

Its easy.

Do it like In-n-Out Burger does, buy one of those cheap hand veggie slicers and keep some regular pots in a triple sink, cut when you need, strain and fry.

Easy and no having to peel the pots.

The secret to crispy brown fresh cut fries is cooking them twice. Rinse them well after cutting, and hold in cold water for a couple hours. Then, blanche them in 300F oil until they just begin to limp up. Maybe 2 to 2.5 minutes (?). You’ll need to test this with your fryer. Drain and spread on paper to drain well and cool. At this point, they can hold in a cooler for a day or two tops. To order, refry them at 350F (375F is better) until crisp and desired color (maybe 60 to 90 seconds?). Try a small batch to see how it works for you.

I knew of the process prior to reading an article in Cooks Illustrated magazine, but they were even more precise and praising of the results. I tried it again at home, and they do come out pretty darned good. Local BBQ place was cooking and serving limp, dark fries. We asked them to cook them twice rather than serving up as their usual. they are light years ahead of their standard.

Cut potatoes will hold in cold water overnight, if needs be. After 2nd frying, the holding time is very difficult unless you use a frozen product with some starch coating designed specifically to stay crisp in holding.

Nick that was the answer I was waiting for…And it makes great fries…All the places around here single fry them from raw…But the “Fry Guy” in the park in the summer does them Nick’s way and even at $5.00 they sell like hot cakes…And I think he uses peanut oil…

Yep Nick ,

This guy in Chicago all he sells is hot dogs, fresh cut fries and tamales. Busiest hot dog joint in Chicago and that is exactly how he does it and they taste GREAT.

The lower heat, I believe, allows the the steam from the potato to interact with the starches at the surface and convert them to sugars. This is during the initial blanching (low temp brief cook). The second cooking allows those surface sugars to caramelize . . . crisping up and developing flavors.

Here’s the Cook’s Illustrated recipe I had saved:

For those who like it, flavoring the oil with a few tablespoons of bacon grease adds a subtle, meaty flavor to the fries. Their texture, however, is not affected if the bacon grease is omitted. Once you’ve peeled the potatoes, you can use a mandolin or V-slicer, rather than cut them by hand. To prepare steak fries, cut the potatoes one-third-inch to one-half-inch thick, and increase the cooking time to ten to twelve minutes during the initial frying and just a few seconds longer in the final fry. Idaho potatoes are also named “russet” or “Burbank”.

4 Idaho potatoes , peeled and cut into 1/4-inch by 1/4-inch lengths, (see illustration 1, below)
2 quarts peanut oil
4 tablespoons bacon fat (optional), strained
Table salt and ground black pepper


 1. Rinse cut fries in large bowl under cold running water until water turns from milky colored to clear. Cover with at least 1 inch of water, then cover with ice (illustration 2). Refrigerate at least 30 minutes. (Can be refrigerated up to 3 days ahead.)

  2. In 5-quart pot or Dutch oven fitted with clip-on-the-pot candy thermometer, or in larger electric fryer, heat oil over medium-low heat to 325 degrees. As oil heats, add bacon grease. Oil will bubble up when you add fries, so be sure you have at least 3 inches of room at top of cooking pot.

  3. Pour off ice and water, quickly wrap potatoes in a clean tea towel, and thoroughly pat dry. Increase heat to medium-high and add fries, a handful at a time, to hot oil. Fry, stirring with Chinese skimmer or large-hole slotted spoon, until potatoes are limp and soft and start to turn from white to blond, 6 to 8 minutes (illustration 3). (Oil temperature will drop 50 to 60 degrees during this frying.) Use skimmer or slotted spoon to transfer fries to brown paper bag to drain (illustration 4); let rest at least 10 minutes (can stand at room temperature up to 2 hours or be wrapped in paper towels, sealed in zipper-lock bag, and frozen up to 1 month).

  4. When ready to serve fries, reheat oil to 350 degrees. Using paper bag as a funnel, pour potatoes into hot oil. Discard bag and set up second paper bag. Fry potatoes, stirring fairly constantly, until golden brown and puffed, about 1 minute. Transfer to paper bag and drain again. Season to taste with salt and pepper, or other seasoned salt. Serve immediately.

What he said. I actually prefer a 375F finish for a crispier product that approaches crunchy . . . I also tend to a larger fry.

I am glad you added that part about freezing! That makes life GRAND!! Spend a couple days setting up a ton of these, portion and freeze individual setups, and fry each to order. Then the prep rotation looks pretty simple just staying ahead of the demand. I would need another fryer or another shift of prep guy to do it, but it would be well worth it to drive fry sales . . . if I sold fries.

Yep, the twice fried method is the only way to go! I owned a sports bar for about twelve years, and that is how we did it. We were know for the best fries in town! Talk about profit!!!

i would like to thanks all of you guys that replied, this works great (the twice frying method) and i think it is a no brainer to make the switch from frozen to doing it this way, the product comews out awesome!!