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Old 08-02-2005, 11:47 AM   #1
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Oven Fries (technique question)

I've made oven fries before, and they've come out fine, but lately, I seem to have lost the hang of it.

They come out soggy instead of crisp. Also, they take too long.
Here's how I did it last night - they tasted ok, but took over an hour and weren't crisp:

On a cookie sheet, I've placed my sliced potatoe wedges (from 6 med. (fist) size potateos).
Drizzled with light olive oil, seasoned with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper and a bit of cayenne pepper or paprika.
Placed in center of 400F oven for 1/2 hour - when I tested them they weren't cooked through.

I think the problems are:
-too many potatoes on the sheet (but I'm cooking for 6 people - two batches will take too long).
-too much oil (I should measure more accurately - I never measure anything, usually cook by feel, but I'm willing to admit defeat, here).
-oven not hot enough
-maybe I should par-cook the potatoes (if so, and I do it in microwave, should I season first?)

Any suggestions? - Sandyj

Also: I want to try this with thinly sliced, skin on, sweet potatoes.


I'm slicing potatoes into wedges (about 1 inch thick), leaving the skins on.

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Old 08-02-2005, 01:05 PM   #2
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Here's the version we adapted from Oprah's "In The Kitchen With Rosie."

2 large egg whites (per 5 large potatoes) mixed with your favorite spices (we start with black pepper, red pepper, and add whatever sounds good at the moment).

Coat the potatoes in this mixture and place on cookie sheet that has 3 coats of cooking spray. 400 degrees for at least 45 minutes (that's if they're cut into sticks).
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:21 PM   #3
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Egg white? Hmmm. An exciting trade secret! Do you think it prevents the chips from getting soggy?
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:28 PM   #4
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The egg whites actually create a "breading" like oven-fried potato wedges.
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:36 PM   #5
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That's right, kitchenelf. Crispy on outside, still soft on the inside - at least if normal people were making them. We like the burned flavor that comes with cooking foods for a much longer time than recommended (horrors!). Our casseroles are always cooked until they have a completely hard-baked bottom and sides. For the fries, we cut them extra-thin so they're crispy almost throughout.
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:36 PM   #6
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From my vaaaaast experience cooking frozen french fries in the oven , 400 degrees sounds low. Perhaps you were using 425 or 450 degrees the last time you made the fries?

Tom
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:43 PM   #7
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Thanks so far for all these tips. I'm going to:
-give the egg whites a go
- increase the temperature to 425F
- lightly coat the bottom of the cooking surface with oil (but not the potatoes?)
I WILL get this right!
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Old 08-02-2005, 01:51 PM   #8
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I've seen as high as 475, even. And we definitely use 425 on our frozen Ore-Ida Zesties (gotta love 'em).
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Old 08-02-2005, 02:49 PM   #9
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I'd do them at 450. The secret to crispy outside and soft inside is high heat. And not using too large a piece of potato.

But that may burn the egg white.

I lightly coat the potatoes with oil, then put them on a baking sheet at 450.
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Old 08-02-2005, 03:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasBlueHeron
That's right, kitchenelf. Crispy on outside, still soft on the inside - at least if normal people were making them. We like the burned flavor that comes with cooking foods for a much longer time than recommended (horrors!). Our casseroles are always cooked until they have a completely hard-baked bottom and sides. For the fries, we cut them extra-thin so they're crispy almost throughout.
Oh my - I like my homemade potato chips, fries extra done too - a lot more brown than the normal person too - and I also like burned popcorn - NOT like on fire but slightly burned.
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