Monday, January 11, 2010

Shoestring Oven Fries

shoestring oven fries

Oh, how I love fried potato products. Chips, french fries, hash browns, whatever. I love them all. Usually, I try to be responsible and enjoy them in moderation, but since these last few weeks have technically been "the holidays" I felt free to indulge with somewhat reckless abandon. And I got sick of fried potatoes. Go figure.

So, while I move ahead into the land of brown rice and kale, let me back up slightly and share with you my recipe for oven fries. I once thought this was a simple thing that everyone could, and did, cook. Then I mentioned it to my boss and she looked at me with incredulity. "You can make FRENCH FRIES in the OVEN?" Now granted, she talks a lot about eating TV dinners so my guess is that, though she is a great boss, she is probably not a great cook.

chop chop

I make oven fries all the time. They are a good way to have a treat without going overboard. And, in this case, they were an excellent companion to some weird vegan "chicken" nuggets that I bought on a whim. Next time I should make my own fake meat. The glories of vital wheat gluten have spoiled me for all bland, supermarket fake meat products (except you, Tofurkey deli slices. I-eee-I will always love yooooooou).

Shoestring Oven Fries

4 medium sized potatoes (white or Yukon Gold)
4 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

Chop potatoes into thin sticks, make sure they are fairly uniformly cut.

Blot potatoes with paper towels or tea towels to remove some of their moisture.

shoestring oven fries

Put potatoes in a large bowl with oil and as much salt and pepper as you'd like. I usually start with a teaspoon of each.

Toss potatoes (I usually just shake the bowl around carefully) until the oil is evenly distributed. Then leave them to sit for five minutes.

Spread the potatoes out on a large cookie sheet and put them in the oven. After approximately 8-10 minutes, take them out and use a spatula to flip them around a bit so they can cook on their other sides.

Don't worry if the potatoes stick slightly to the pan. I find that if they are slightly torn up, it gives them more crevasses in which to get crispy.

Put the potatoes back in the oven and let them cook for another 5-10 minutes, until they are brown and crispy. Taste test the largest potato you can find to make sure it is cooked all the way.

Serves two hungry people or four not-as-hungry people.

Some Notes:

-Hey! Great news! I've been asked to be one of the on air cookbook reviewers for the CBC radio show "In Town and Out"! Each month they give a cookbook to two willing participants and have them cook a bunch of recipes from it, then come on the air at the end of the month and talk about the book. Of course I got selected for the vegan month, and so I'll be reviewing Tal Ronnen's much ballyhooed new book, The Conscious Cook. I'll be blogging about some of my attempts to recreate his somewhat complicated recipes. I've already been thwarted by the supermarket's lack of artichokes. It should be in interesting month.

-If you haven't already, you may wish to join this blog's Facebook Group. I haven't made a whole lot of use of the group yet, but I will be doing some giveaways in the near future and the group will be integral to that. Truth be told, I feel a little wonky about my use of technology. I'm not always super good at it, and often call on Kat or Megan for advice. So if you have any suggestions for how I can be hip and make use of technology, let me know!

-Not food related, but I just finished reading Invisible by Paul Auster and I really loved it. If you like slightly dark, unpredictable novels set in New York and Paris, you should go to the library and get it.



Steve said...

I want to dip those in ketchup! They look awesome.

skylark said...

I make them too and for an extra kick I sprinkle mine with cayenne and paprika.

HayMarket8 said...

I love the fries. 11 years as a vegan and I am still a total sucker for some (even unhealthy) fries! Yum! Cute knife too!

The Ordinary Vegetarian said...

Yum, love this. I have never made fries at home. I'm with you on the tofurkey deli slices, so good!

I like the new header a lot. I can say that because I have actually been reading your blog for a couple of months but have never spoken up :) by the way, hello!

J. said...

OV- Thanks for commenting! I looked at your blog and it looks great. I will subscribe!

Penny said...

Yum! I have never cooked them like this, but I have a few potatoes hanging around. Will report back.

Cassie said...

I love fries! I haven't made the shoestring variety before, though. One of my nieces makes french fries almost everyday :)

Good luck with the radio show!

ciaochow said...

Oooh, I love homemade fries!

I don't get paid to say this but far superior (in my humble opinion) are the PC meatless chicken drumsticks. Freezer section. Try them, love them, dip them in honey mustard (or regular mustard if you're that kind of vegan) - I'd love to hear your opinion!

The Voracious Vegan said...

EEEEE!!! Congratulations on the radio show, I'm so happy for you! This is thrilling, what a great opportunity.

And I so agree, fried potatoes in any form is a ticket to heaven. For some reason I don't find myself eating a lot of potatoes, but when I do it is usually potato chips, fried fries, or hashbrowns. Magic! Yours look fantastic!

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cupcakelakin said...

I am going to try these for dinner. I watch what my kids eat, and my daughter will only eat shoestring fries from Fast Food Places or Frozen ones, so I will give these a shot and see if she will eat them. I will let y'all know how it goes over!