I’ve been meaning to fry stuff for sometime, because I miss fried food and the last time Mary Kate and I had a fry-a-palooza was this past Thanksgiving. And I wanted potato chips. I tried a recipe where you baked them, but it took two hours of prep, and seriously, I can fry them faster than that, with less aggravation. This is one of those recipes where having good tools helps. I used a mandoline to slice the russet potato and sweet potato, and I used a Thermopop thermometer to keep track of the temperature of the oil. Also, I used a cast iron wok to fry in, because I like it and it uses less oil, but you can use a regular skillet or stock pot if you use enough oil.
Chili Flavored Russet and Sweet Potato Chips:
Serves 1 (let’s be realistic about this…I ate them all in 10 minutes).
- 1 Russet Potato, sliced extremely thin
- 1 Sweet Potato, sliced extremely thin
- a pinch of DIY Chili Powder
- a pinch of salt
- safe oil for frying enough to fill the pot about 3 to 4 inches deep
For the frying:
- A pot deep enough to accommodate about 3 inches of oil and the frying thermometer, a thick stainless steel stock pot or an enameled dutch oven would be best, although I used a cast iron wok and just fried less chips at a time. You also want a pot that’s tall enough that the edge is 4 or more inches above the oil level. It’s safer and there’s less splatter all around. We do not recommend using anything with Teflon or nonstick coatings. Of course, if you have an actual deep fryer appliance, use that.
- frying thermometer (but you can’t use this one with a wok, in case you planned use a wok instead, I used this one and just stuck it in the oil periodically to check.)
- tongs and/or slotted frying spoon/spider (we used a silicone one rather than the traditional wire and bamboo, but I can’t find a picture of ours)
- plate or cookie sheet, lined with paper towels
Set up your frying pot, add your safe oil, and set up your thermometer. Start heating your oil over medium heat, as it will take some time to reach the right temperature. You are aiming for about 380ºF.
I used a mandoline, shown below, to slice my potatoes, but you can slice them with a knife if your knife skills are that good.
The slices of your Russet potato will be wet and starchy. Place them in a bowl and water and agitate them a bit to rinse the starch off.
Place the rinsed slices in between the folds of a clean kitchen towel to dry them off.
The sweet potato slices should be dry enough after slicing as there is less water content than a Russet potato.
When the oil temperature is 380°F, carefully add some of the potato slices to the pot. You don’t want to overcrowd them.
Fry the potatoes, turning them occasionally with tongs until they are golden brown. They should be fried a bit darker in color than normal potato chips so that they are crispy. The mandoline does not quite cut the potatoes as thinly as a commercial potato chip, and in order to get some crisp, you need to cook them a little longer. The potatoes will start to wave and distort when they are close. if the potato chip seems pretty flat still, keep frying a bit. When the potato slices are fried, place them on the plate or cookie sheet lined with paper towels to drain.
Once the chips have cooled a little, place them in a bowl and sprinkle the salt and chili powder on them to taste and toss them a bit to coat them and distribute the seasoning.