French-fried potatoes were likely invented during the 18th century in the area that later became Belgium. The name “French” was applied to them in (American) English at the beginning of the 19th century. The straightforward explanation of the term is that it means potatoes fried in the French sense of the verb: “to fry” can mean either sauteing or deep-fat frying, while its French origin, frire, unambiguously means deep-frying : frites being its past participle used with a plural feminine substantive, as in pommes de terre frites (“deep-fried potatoes”). Thomas Jefferson, famous for serving French dishes, wrote exactly the latter French expression. In the early 20th century, the term “French fried” was being used for foods such as onion rings or chicken, apart from potatoes. The verb “to french”, though not attested until after “French fried potatoes” had appeared, can refer to “julienning” of vegetables as is acknowledged by some dictionaries while others only refer to trimming the meat off the shanks of chops.
- 6 Russet potatoes
- canola oil
- kosher salt
- Cut the potatoes up in equal size. Soak the fries in water and wash and rinse at least twice. You have to dry the fries and the easiest way to do that is with the salad spinner, and after that I pat them dry.
- Deep fry (don’t put the lid on it otherwise they will definitely turn soggy )the fries in the canola oil 160C (325 F) for about 7 min. Take them out and let them cool down. At this point you could freeze them and use the fries at a later time. Increase the heat to 175 C (350 F) and fry them again till crisp and golden. Sprinkle with some kosher salt and eat them with some French fries mayonnaise. I haven’t found the perfect Dutch french fries mayonnaise recipe. In the meantime I use the commercial one.