When I was little, we never bought frozen french fries, my Mom always made them homemade, cutting them up with her “Veg-O-Matic” and frying them in her “Fry Daddy.” These french fries are the ones that I grew up on, but in the age of convenience, I just don’t make them very often.
My two older kids were telling my twins, who are about 6 years younger, how we “always” use to make homemade french fries in our old house. So, I thought it was time to break out the Veg-O-Matic and dust off the fry baby fryer.
Never heard of a Veg-O-Matic?
This was how we ALWAYS made our french fries. Simply peeled and washed the potatoes, place the potato on the blades, and pressed down, and french fries came out the bottom!!
AMAZING when I was a kid! (you know we DIDN’T have cable back then, right?)
Well, the story of where I got my Veg-O-Matic is a sad but sweet one. I didn’t get it from my mom like you probably suspected.
In 1997, my husband’s paternal grandparents passed away on the very same day within hours of one another. They were still very active, and his grandmother had come home after golfing. She found him in his favorite chair. The rescue squad came and took him to the hospital in a nearby town. We had gotten the call, and my husband jumped in the car to drive there. By the time he had arrived, they said that his grandmother wasn’t doing very well either, and a short while later passed away. The doctors said she died of a broken heart. So, after 62 years of marriage, they were buried side by side on the same day. For anyone that ever tells you that true love doesn’t exist, you can tell them they never met Grandma and Grandpa Kenkel!
When they had their estate sale, all of the items for sale were set up on flat bed trailers outside of their home. Years and years of stuff, boxed up and auctioned off. My husband and I wandered through looking through the boxes and I saw peeking out of the bottom of one …a Veg-O-Matic! I HAD to have it!! We purchased that whole box of odds and ends so that I could, and it is in my cupboard and always will be.
Fast forward almost 20 years, and here’s me, with a food blog, loving what I do. I also love to watch cooking shows on TV. I was curious as to why they always “pre-fried” their french fries? I started doing a little research as to why? Turns out it’s how they get all crispy good on the outside but nice and soft on the inside!!
I HAD to try it!!
Here’s another tip you may not know about french fry making: ALWAYS soak your fries in COLD water for AT LEAST 3 hours prior to making them This soaks off all of the starch and helps you fry a crispier fry!
soak in cold water
pre-fry your potatoes
Achieve Fantastic French Fryness!
- 5 pounds Russet Potatoes, peeled and sliced
- Vegetable Oil, for frying
- Sea Salt, for seasoning
- **Reminder: Always be careful when frying with hot oil. Keep oil out of the reach of small children.
Peel and rinse the potatoes.
Cut potatoes in four or five vertical pieces, and then cut each piece into sticks of your desired size. (or use that old Veg-o-matic!)
Place potatoes in a large bowl and completely cover them with cold water, then allow them to soak for at least three hours, you can also place them in the fridge and let them soak overnight.
When it’s time to make the French fries, drain the water off and blot any remaining water off with a paper towel. Water can be dangerous when it hits hot oil!
Fill fryer to “fill line: with vegetable oil and heat to 300 degrees. In small batches, fry potatoes for about 5 minutes, potatoes should be soft but not brown! Remove them from fryer and lay them aside on a paper towel lined baking dish.
Once potatoes have been pre-fried, turn up the heat on your oil to 400 degrees.
Fry the potatoes again until they are golden brown and crispy on the outside. This will take about 10 minutes. Watch them closely.
Sprinkle fries with sea salt to season.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 321 Total Fat: 6g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 160mg Carbohydrates: 61g Fiber: 7g Sugar: 3g Protein: 7g