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Subject: French Fries Tips Needed
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: Diamond 
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 2001 04:14:02 +0100
--------
I'm trying to figure out the various factors in making the best possible
tasting french fry.

I'd like suggestions if possible onthe following:

1) The best variety of potatoe to use (I live in the UK so those availble
readily in the UK would be most useful)

2) The best cooking - espacially non-animal based product such as Peanut
Oil, etc.

3) The best cooking method & tempreture/time- many suggest double cooking

4) Can anyone tell me what's in that gravy that is very popular in Canada,
had it at both Costco and New York Fries. Can this be bought in a store, my
cousin is going to Toronto for a week and will bring back things so if there
are some good brand names out there please post.

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From: Colin McGregor 
Date: Fri, 19 Oct 2001 21:04:45 GMT
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Diamond wrote:

>I'm trying to figure out the various factors in making the best possible
>tasting french fry.

The best french fries in my books are the ones at New York Fries and
they use a triple fry method (the details of which I don't know). What
I do at home is a double fry cooking method that results in a very
good french fry, but not the excellence of New York Fries.

>1) The best variety of potatoe to use (I live in the UK so those availble
>readily in the UK would be most useful)

You want a high starch potato. The best known of these are the Russet
Burbank (developed by 19th century plant breeder Luther Burbank). In
Canada and the U.S. you will sometimes see Russet Burbank potatoes
labeled "Idaho" potatoes as I gather of the types of potatoes grown in
that state Russet Burbank dominate almost to the exclusion of all
else.

>2) The best cooking - espacially non-animal based product such as Peanut
>Oil, etc.

I've had good results with vegetable oil (a blended mix of several
oils). I know that New York Fries uses peanut oil.

>3) The best cooking method & tempreture/time- many suggest double cooking

- Slice the potatoes into french fry size pieces (about 1/4 inch
thick). Leave the skin on.
- Soak the fries in COLD water for 30-60 minutes.
- Take the fries out of the water and dry with a paper towel.
- Fry in small batches in 320 degree F oil for 2-3 minutes (until the
fries are soft/floppy).
- Take the fries out let drain on a rack and cool to room temperature.
- Heat the oil to 375 degrees F.
- Cook the fries again until crisp and golden brown (about 2-3
minutes).
- Remove the fries from the oil, and dust with a bit of kosher salt
and serve hot.

>4) Can anyone tell me what's in that gravy that is very popular in Canada,
>had it at both Costco and New York Fries. Can this be bought in a store, my
>cousin is going to Toronto for a week and will bring back things so if there
>are some good brand names out there please post.

Something like Franco-American beef gravy is probably what you have in
mind.

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From: Diamond 
Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2001 01:16:36 +0100
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Thanks for the detailed response.

one thing though .. are you sure New York fries uses peanut oils? I looke
dta their website and they state they use Canola oil, also I found out the
gravy I liked in Canada was called Poutine.

I think it's a chicken based gravy.

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From: rmi1013934[at]aol.com (Rosie Miller)
Date: 21 Oct 2001 16:46:44 GMT
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Diamond writes:
>one thing though .. are you sure New York fries uses peanut oils? I looke
>dta their website and they state they use Canola oil, also I found out the
>gravy I liked in Canada was called Poutine.

The best tasting Fries I have eaten are made with lard.
Gotta be the  best. 

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From: Diamond 
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 16:21:29 +0100
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I look into what McDonalds used to use and it was Beef Tallow.

It seems they have turned to some flavour company to add something to their
fries to make them taste similar without using the beef to coof with,
although this flavour maybe a beef extract.

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From: Colin McGregor 
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 17:53:37 GMT
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Diamond wrote:
>one thing though .. are you sure New York fries uses peanut oils? I looke
>dta their website and they state they use Canola oil, also I found out the
>gravy I liked in Canada was called Poutine.
>
>I think it's a chicken based gravy.

Sorry, I do stand corrected regarding the oil type. As for the gravy,
I normally see poutine with beef gravy, but yes, there are those those
who do it with a chicken based gravy, and even a few who do it with a
BBQ sauce that is meat-free. Your call...

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From: Diamond 
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 01:57:10 +0100
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I've tried Peanut oil as many have suggested - I can't tast any of the nutty
taste in the fries, however have notice they seem a lot less oily then when
cooked with normal vegatable oil.

I've come across some site that say some very bad things about Canola oil,
and how it cause cancer or whatever. Any thoughts on this?

============================

From: Colin McGregor 
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 13:04:11 GMT
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Diamond wrote:
>I've tried Peanut oil as many have suggested - I can't tast any of the nutty
>taste in the fries, however have notice they seem a lot less oily then when
>cooked with normal vegatable oil.
>
>I've come across some site that say some very bad things about Canola oil,
>and how it cause cancer or whatever. Any thoughts on this?

I try not to get caught up in this or that seeming health trend, or
the results of one inital study. What I do know is that I find Canola
oil by itself has a taste that I find somewhat unpleasant, and so I
trend strongly to avoid Canola oil.

Just slightly off topic, one small farming community in Western Canada
a few years got into trouble with feminist groups over a old sign they
kept up at the entrance to the town. Before canola seed (from which
canola oil is extracted) was known as canola seed, it had a different
name, rape seed. Any event the town had an old sign up claiming (with
some apparent pride) to be the rape capital of Canada. I can
appreciate and understand the desire to preserve old things, but, but,
but....

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From: "Justin" 
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 12:53:30 -0400
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ALL OIL WILL EVENTUALLY LEAD TO CANCER, however, in moderation...and peanut
oil is pretty expensive comparatively speaking, or writing

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From: garyokada[at]yahoo.com (GaryO)
Date: 24 Oct 2001 14:22:17 -0700
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Diamond wrote:
> I've tried Peanut oil as many have suggested - I can't tast any of the nutty
> taste in the fries, however have notice they seem a lot less oily then when
> cooked with normal vegatable oil.

Peanut oil is considered to be essentially tasteless, which, along
with its very high smoking point, is why it is considered to be a good
cooking oil.  I actually have occasionally had peanut oil which tasted
of peanuts, or was the victim of a series of practical joke.

Lard makes for tasty fries.

> I've come across some site that say some very bad things about Canola oil,
> and how it cause cancer or whatever. Any thoughts on this?

I don't know enough about the controversy to comment on it.

canola oil 

[kan-OH-luh]
The market name for RAPESEED OIL which, as might be assumed from the
name, is expressed from rape seeds. For obvious reasons, the name was
changed to canola by the Canadian seed-oil industry. Canola is, in
fact, Canada's most widely used oil. It's commonly referred to there
as lear oil,  for "low erucic acid rapeseed" oil. The popularity of
canola oil is rising fast in the United States, probably because it's
been discovered to be lower in saturated fat (about 6 percent) than
any other oil. This compares to the saturated fat content of peanut
oil (about 18 percent) and palm oil (at an incredibly high 79
percent). Another canola oil selling point is that it contains more
cholesterol-balancing monounsaturated fat than any oil except olive
oil. It also has the distinction of containing Omega-3 fatty acids,
the wonder polyunsaturated fat reputed to not only lower both
cholesterol and triglycerides, but to contribute to brain growth and
development as well. The bland-tasting canola oil is suitable both for
cooking and for salad dressings. See also  FATS AND OILS.

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From: Default User 
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 22:07:25 GMT
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GaryO wrote:
> I don't know enough about the controversy to comment on it.

Urban legend. Ranks up there with Nutrasweet gives you brain damage.

http://www.snopes2.com/toxins/canola.htm

Brian

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From: Sprucedale 
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 15:41:11 -0400
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Poutine is a Quebec-based treat that's actually a dish consisting of french
fries, topped with cheese curds then covered with gravy.

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Subject: Re: French Fries Tips Needed
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking
From: "Diamond" 
Date: Tue, 30 Oct 2001 02:12:03 -0000
--------
Sprucedale wrote:
> Poutine is a Quebec-based treat that's actually a dish consisting of french
> fries, topped with cheese curds then covered with gravy.

My cousin came back from Canada today with Poutine in cans, it was very nice
to taste it again.

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From: Diamond 
Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2001 12:16:49 -0000
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I'm still trying to find Idaho Potatoes inthe UK and not having much luck
any ideas of possible sources inthe London Area?

============================

From: andrewalan.nix 
Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2001 14:58:04 -0000
--------
Diamond wrote:
> I'm still trying to find Idaho Potatoes inthe UK and not having much luck
> any ideas of possible sources inthe London Area?

try Desiree or estima , I know they are not the same but import laws will
not allow imports due to threat of Colorado beetle

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From: penmart01[at]aol.como (Sheldon)
Date: 02 Nov 2001 14:58:15 GMT
--------
Diamond writes:
>I'm still trying to find Idaho Potatoes inthe UK and not having much luck
>any ideas of possible sources in the London Area?

potato
Today, hundreds of varieties of this popular vegetable are grown around the
world. In America, the potato can be divided into four basic categories:
russet, long white, round white and round red. The russet Burbank potato (also
simply called russet  and Idaho ) is long, slightly rounded and has a brown,
rough skin and numerous eyes. Its low moisture and high starch content not only
give it superior baking qualities but also make it excellent for FRENCH FRIES.
The russet Burbank was named for its developer, horticulturalist Luther Burbank
of Idaho. Although grown throughout the Midwest, the russet is also commonly
called IDAHO POTATO (whether or not it's grown there). (Epicurious)

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From: Alan Zelt 
Date: Fri, 02 Nov 2001 22:45:30 GMT
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Diamond wrote:
> I'm still trying to find Idaho Potatoes inthe UK and not having much luck
> any ideas of possible sources inthe London Area?

Funny thing is that in many parts of Europe, "Idaho" style potatoes are
grown, but used for fodder.

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From: NO_SPAM_TO_dpharris[at]gci.net (Dennis P. Harris)
Date: Sat, 03 Nov 2001 01:28:51 -0900
--------
Diamond wrote:
> I'm still trying to find Idaho Potatoes inthe UK and not having much luck
> any ideas of possible sources inthe London Area?
 
ask for "russets".  your typical baking potato.  rough brown skin, many
eyes, mealy when cooked.  lower water content than smooth skinned types.

other spuds will fry, but russets make the best french fries.


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