Food and prop styling by Renee Muller
Photography by Hudi Greenberger
Every time I walk into a pizza shop, I always eye the garlic knots out of the corner of my eye, and I’m guessing most of you do the same. So when a customer goes through the menu in my restaurant and asks me, “What’s garlic fries?” I always answer the same thing: “Think garlic knots, now think garlic fries.”
I decided to prepare this recipe with fresh potatoes, skin on, to keep it as authentic as possible. Of course, you can do the same with frozen French fries. For best results, please double-fry your potatoes.
YIELDS 4–6 PORTIONS
- 20 cloves garlic
- ½ cup olive oil
- 6 russet potatoes, sliced into strips
- salt, pepper, and oregano, to taste
- freshly chopped parsley, for garnish
- techinah, for serving (optional)
- Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)
To make the garlic: Pulse the garlic cloves in a food processor until you have small chunks. In a frying pan over low heat, heat olive oil and add the garlic. Cook for 6–8 minutes, mixing every minute or so until you see the edges brown. (Garlic burns quickly, so keep an eye on it.) Remove from heat and let cool. Can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.
Prepare the potatoes: Fill a large bowl with water and soak the potatoes for at least 30 minutes and up to 24 hours. This will help remove the excess starch from the potatoes and keep them from oxidizing.
Fill a heavy stock pot fitted with a deep-fry thermometer with oil and heat to 325°F (160°C).
Remove potatoes from the water and pat dry to remove excess water. Place two handfuls of potatoes into the hot oil. There should be at least 1 inch (2½ cm) of oil above the potatoes. Par-cook until the potatoes are light brown, about 5–7 minutes. Remove potatoes from the oil, gently shaking off the excess oil, and let them drain on a rack. Repeat until all of the potatoes are par-cooked and allow to cool.
Raise the oil heat to 350–375°F (175–190°C). Cook potatoes again, two handfuls at a time, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove from oil and shake off excess oil. Repeat until all potatoes are cooked.
Drain the oil from the garlic. (Don’t discard the garlic-infused oil — use it in a salad or in cooking anything that calls for garlic.) Toss the fries lightly with the garlic mixture, salt, pepper, and oregano to taste.
Garnish with fresh chopped parsley. For extra points, drizzle techinah on top. For double extra points, sprinkle with some Parmesan cheese.
This can be prepared in advance, just fry the second time and combine with the garlic immediately before serving.
(Originally featured in Family Table, Issue 754)
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