Saturday, July 31, 2010

Chorizo Hash Browns

Here's one from Serious Eats, posted by Nick Kindelsperger - Chorizo Hash Browns...

"I have a thing for hash browns. I love the crisp edges and the deep oniony bite. This recipe adapted from Gourmet tosses in some Spanish chorizo for some extra meatiness, and some smoked paprika to really bring things home. I wouldn't call this thing light by any means, but sometimes I really need something heavy and filling like this.

"As with most heavy fried-potato dishes, an egg somehow seems to make sense. Too bad I didn't realize that until I took this picture. But just mentally stick a runny yolk on top and we're all set. Oh, and those little black specks are some deeply caramelized onions. I panicked and worried that they'd taste burned, but instead they were truly sweet and delicious."

Check out the recipe here.

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Friday, July 30, 2010

Sweet and Celery from Sunny

On Food Network Fridays today we have Sunny Anderson, one of the cooler and more down to earth chefs on the Food Network.

On the "Masterpiece Burger" episode of her "Cooking for Real" show, she creates a wonderful spin on non-potato fries with her Sweet Potato and Celery Root Fries.

You can find the recipe here and also below:


* 2 large sweet potatoes
* 1 large celery root, peeled
* 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
* 1/2 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder
* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3 tablespoons olive oil


Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cut potatoes and celery root into 1/2-inch thick matchsticks. In a small bowl, mix together cayenne, paprika, 5-spice powder, garlic powder, black pepper and salt. Spread matchsticks evenly on 2 sheet trays and toss with oil and spice mixture. Roast until golden brown, about 40 minutes, shaking pan occasionally. Serve immediately

Make sure you check out the actual video here. Mmmm... fries...

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pat's Free Fries

There's nothing like free, and if there's anything better than free, it's free French fries!

Pat's Family Restaurant, a local chain that French Fry Diary has been to a number of times, does a thing on Tuesdays we like to call "the wheel of free."

You spin a wheel sort of like TV's "Wheel of Fortune" and one of the things you can land on is 'free fries' and then you get coupons like these to use for your next visit. Of course you can also get things like free pizza, half off your meal, or even all of your meal on the house - but hey, we're all about the fries here.

So don't forget to drop by Pat's on Tuesdays, spin the wheel, and you too might get free fries!

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

French Fry Diary 131: French Fry Cupcakes

My good friend Nancy Whitcraft of Pink Sheep Style referred this one to me. I'll let her take it from here:

"This cupcake idea is from the book, "What's New, Cupcake?: Ingeniusly Simple Designs for Every Occasion" by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson. Love it.

"For the cupcakes I baked, I changed a few things. Instead of 'plating' the fries on a plate, I bought French fry baskets at a local restaurant supplier. I then added wax paper to the baskets. For the ketchup holders, I went to a fast food restaurant and 'borrowed' some of their containers. (After making a food purchase)

"The 'French fries' are pound cake and the ketchup is red dyed frosting. You put extra frosting in the squeeze bottle. You can squeeze frosting onto pound cake or dip it in the ketchup containers."

Wow, that's something, Nancy, and props to you, and Karen and Alan's book of course. Thanks! And don't forget to check out Nancy's work at the websites above!

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Monday, July 26, 2010

French Fry Diary 130: Herr's Potato Stix

When it comes to potato sticks, it used to be hard to beat French's (also known as Durkee in some places at certain times). The relationship between French's and potato sticks was like Scotch tape or Kleenex tissue. French's was the brand for the snack, what you thought of when you thought of potato sticks, but unfortunately the folks at French's have discontinued their potato sticks. The bastards. Now we have to rely on folks like Herr's. They make great chips, but sometimes their sticks ... not so good.

I bought two packs of Herr's Potato Stix on a recent late night Wawa snack run, one regular and one barbeque. The idea of the latter just blew my mind and I couldn't wait to try them - imagine barbequed potato sticks! I tried the plain first unfortunately, and they were just horrible. Not recommended. After that, the barbeque pack just sat on a shelf at home for a while. I didn't want to try them any more.

The other night, in lieu of doing another snack run, especially in this heat, I finally turned to that bag of Herr's Barbeque Potato Stix. They really could have been terrible, but instead they were exactly what was promised. Surprise. Crisp tasty potato sticks and hot spicy seasoning. Recommended. I don't know what they did wrong with the regular, but they did it right with the barbeque.

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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Beer-Glazed Potatoes

* Exported from MasterCook Mac *

Beer-Glazed Potatoes

Recipe By : Better Homes and Gardens - October 1998
Serving Size : 4 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Potatoes/Skillet

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 medium potatoes -- cut in 1/2" wedges
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 medium green sweet pepper -- cut in 1/2" wedges
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup pale ale, lager or amber beer
1/4 cup beef broth or chicken broth
1 tablespoon brown sugar

In a 12-inch skillet heat olive oil ove medium heat. Layer potatoes into skillet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 15 minutes, turning occasionally. (If potatoes being to stick, add additional oil to skillet). Stir in green sweet pepper and onion. Cook and stir gently for 5-10 minutes more or until the vegetables are tender. Add beer, broth, and brown sugar. Cook, uncovered, about 3-5 minutes more or until beef has thickened slightly.

Brought to you by Grassroots Recipes Mastercook Collections and Jamie Rahm

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Saturday, July 24, 2010

French Fry Diary 129: Casa Carollo

We returned to Casa Carollo Bar & Grill recently, once again for the Comedy Cabaret. We once again got to see Teri Valentine, enjoyed the stand-up of host Simply Dee, the very funny Jason Pollock and headliner Terry Gillespie. All in all, a fun night, but as always, that's not what you're here for, you're here for the favorite fried food.

This time we got the famous house Carollo Fries. These are the same deep-fried regular cuts we got last time -not great, but not bad either- with American cheese, cheddar cheese and barely cooked bacon on top. This might have actually been very good had the bacon been crisp or the fries hotter than just warm. Just a hint, hot fries equal melted cheese.

Onion rings were also ordered. While the menu itself says they are dusted with seasoned flour, these are actually breaded and deep-fried, not that there's anything wrong with that. These were actually quite good, and I'll order them next time as well. Big rings of onion, crunchy and tasty. Well done.

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Friday, July 23, 2010

Sandra Lee's Sweet Potato Fries

This week on Food Network Friday we have Sandra Lee. According to her Food Network bio, "An internationally-acclaimed home and style expert, Sandra Lee's trademark 70/30 Semi-Homemade philosophy combines 70% ready-made products with 30% fresh, giving everyone the confidence to create food that looks and tastes from scratch."

Here's her recipe for sweet potato fries: from the episode "Denim & Diamonds" of her TV series "Semi-Homemade Cooking with Sandra Lee." Enjoy!

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Thursday, July 22, 2010

French Fry Diary 128: Sage Diner for Breakfast

The Sage Diner Restaurant in Mount Laurel NJ has been a landmark on Route 73 for over twenty years. It might not have the history of some or be open 24/7 like most, but it is part of the long tradition of Jersey diners. Occasionally the family will get together for breakfast at the Sage, and this time I decided to write it up.

First things first, they seem to be completely incapable of not making bacon any way other than well done. And by well done, I mean little strips of brown charcoal. But, we're not here to discuss the bacon, we're here for the favorite fried food, and in the morning, it's home fries.

The home fries at the Sage Diner are scalloped and chopped up potatoes, interestingly, some with skins. Many places don't do that and it adds to the presentation a bit. They were not seasoned however, and they arrived at the table just barely warm. The potatoey bits were decent but the crispy ones were as crunchy as the bacon. Cook's day off maybe?

This was very disappointing as I have had good breakfast potatoes here before. In hindsight, on previous trips with good potatoes it was not during business hours so perhaps they were cooked fresh then. After this experience I suspect that these home fries were cooked much earlier, kept under a heat lamp and dispensed throughout the morning. Boo hiss.

As I didn't eat most of my serving I took it home. Much later, reheated and seasoned they weren't bad. I guess, just like Charlie Brown's Christmas tree, they just needed a little bit of tender loving care. Or to be finished being cooked, and seasoned...

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Monday, July 19, 2010

French Fry Diary 127: The Healthiest Deep Fryer on Earth

While some of the Health Nazis might say that the ‘healthiest deep fryer on earth’ would be no deep fryer at all, the folks at Hammacher Schlemmer have come up with this – simply called the Healthiest Deep Fryer.

This kitchen appliance miracle cooks up to two pounds of French fries with just one tablespoon of oil. A simple concept, it is a convection oven that spins the spuds and lets the hot air cook them. The end product is those crispy on the outside, soft and hot on the inside fries that regular deep fryers make so well.

The bad news is, of course, the price tag. This baby lists for a mere $300.

Nice, but I'll stick with my Rival CF156 deep fryer. Maybe not so healthy, but it makes fantastic fries.

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Saturday, July 17, 2010

French Fry Diary 126: The French Fry Knife

Okay, yeah, I'm calling it a French Fry Knife, but it's really a Traditional Cheese Knife from Cutco.

Despite anything bad that might be said about the folks at Cutco, they make damn good knives. We bought a sandwich spreader and two steak knives from my nephew that have yet to be equaled. If they weren't so darned expensive, we'd gladly buy more. Yeah, they're that good.

My wonderful sister-in-law thought of me when she was being sold on some of the Cutco merchandise. When the Traditional Cheese Knife was described as being great for cutting potatoes for French fries, she was sold. Thanks, Amy, can't wait to try it out!

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Anne Burrell's Fingerling Home Fries

For Food Network Fridays today we're looking at Chef Anne Burrell.

I dig Anne a lot. She's the feisty no-nonsense pseudo punk blonde who's the host of "Secrets of a Restaurant Chef" and co-judge and co-host with Beau MacMillan of "Worst Cooks in America." She rocks.

Just don't get on her bad side, at least in her kitchen - as some of the contestants on "Worst Cooks in America" will attest to. But then again, there's a reason they were 'the worst cooks in America.'

This potato-centric breakfast (or brunch, or anytime) recipe is from the "The Secret to Brunch" episode of Anne's "Secrets of a Restaurant Chef."

Find the recipe here. Enjoy!

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Thursday, July 15, 2010

French Fry Diary 125: Ciconte's Italia Pizzeria, Marlton NJ

Usually when it comes to ordering pizza or steak sandwiches locally we do Sal's Pizzaworks, but this time we took the suggestion of a houseguest and tried Ciconte's Italia Pizzeria, also here in Marlton.

The steak sandwiches were great, although a little help seemed to be required to get orders correct, but for the most part, the food was very, very good. The calzones especially got an enthusiastic thumbs up.

The fries were regular cuts, deep fried, not greasy, and a bit cold. That last bit may have been due to them having been delivered, but that's the way the French fry crumbles.

All in all, this was a standard Italian pizzeria experience, better than usual, and a good alternative to Sal's.

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The French Canadian

After the blog was removed from My Yahoo! mysteriously, it took a while to find This Is Why You're Fat again, but here it is, back again.

Here's an entry called The French Canadian, it's a poutine sandwich filled with those awful gravy fries the Canadians like so much, using two pieces of French toast as the bread and topped with maple syrup.

Yep, it's very patriotic if you're from the Great White North, but it is definitely why you are fat...

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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

French Fry Diary 124: National French Fries Day

From My Punchbowl:

July 13, 2010 is National French Fries Day. Oh how we love those deep-fried strips of potato we know more commonly as French fries (or "chips" in England). The Belgians claim to have invented French fries, but no one knows for sure.

According to a Belgian historian, French fries date back to the 1600s when the inhabitants of a region formerly known as the Spanish Netherlands (currently Belgium) had the custom of accompanying their meals with small fried fish. When the river froze and they could not fish they turned to potatoes, which they cut lengthwise and fried in oil. The term "French" was introduced during World War I when soldiers arrived and tasted the fries. They called them "French" as it was the official language of the Belgian Army at the time.

Today, we have many variations of French fries. Waffle fries, curly fries, sweet potato fries, shoestring fries - what's your favorite? Whatever variation you prefer, chances are you'll be eating them away from home like most Americans. In fact, one fast-food chain's famous fries are so popular, they have their own Facebook page with more than half a million fans!

So hit up the drive-thru and super size your order to celebrate National French Fries Day!

Other ideas on how to celebrate National French Fries Day comes from eHow. Click here for their suggestions.

As for me, I think I'm going to make my own French fries. Mmmm... fries...

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Monday, July 12, 2010

Pommes Soufles

From Saveur Magazine:

Here is how Julia Child and Jacques Pepin tell us to make pommes souffl├ęs.


6-8 large russet potatoes

First Jacques peels the potatoes. Next he trims each one into a uniform oblong with flat sides and bottom. Either by hand or with a mandolin, he slices the potatoes just a bit thicker than 1⁄8". The slices are fried once in a pan with at least 1 1⁄2" of vegetable oil heated to 300°, then fried for a second time in hotter oil-375°-until they puff into golden, perfect pommes souffl├ęs. Salt to taste and serve immediately.

This article was first published in Saveur in Issue #40

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Saturday, July 10, 2010

Joe Robinson’s Bergeson Fries

Not the kind of fries you think. Joe Robinson is a major recording artist down under and won "Australia’s Got Talent." This is a tune he wrote about fellow guitar player from Nashville, Pat Bergeson, and sadly not the favorite fried food. It’s still cool though.

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Thursday, July 08, 2010

Cow Appresheeation Day 2010

It's that time again. Tomorrow is the annual Cow Appresheeation Day at your local Chick-fil-A.

Dress like a cow, from the easy to the complicated, from the restaurant-supplied or net-downloaded paper cow headband to full-on cow costume - do it and you get free food!

For the price of looking moo-like, you'll get a free Chick-fil-A meal. What a deal! Don't forget those hot delicious waffle fries!

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Thursday, July 01, 2010

French Fry Diary 123: Pat’s Family Restaurant III

This is my third review of Pat’s. Twice I hit them for the fries. The first time they weren’t so hot, but numerous visits afterward revealed that first time to be a glitch. More often than not, Pat’s has terrific fries. But that’s not why I’m here tonight. This is about Pat’s onion rings.

They are breaded deep-fried whole rings of onions of varying sizes. These aren’t pieces, chunks or chopped onions, these are the real deal. These rings are very crispy and juicy, and much like their potatoey counterparts, the onion rings at Pat’s are recommended.

On the French fry front I was going to comment on how the last half-dozen or so times I had been to Pat’s it seemed like they were skimping on the fries. This time, as if they knew what I might write, there were a lot. I guess it depends on who’s cooking and the time of day.

Always a quality fry at Pat’s, just as good as Five Guys, and that’s saying a lot.

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