Wednesday, February 27, 2013

French Fry Diary 466: Pringles Cinnamon & Sugar

My loving big sister spied some intriguing flavors of Pringles Potato Crisps over the holidays, so of course she scooped them up for me. Wow. Looking at the flavors, I'm not sure if she's trying help me with the blog - or if she's mad at me.

The first flavor we tried was the Cinnamon & Sugar. The Bride liked them but said they were simply Pringles with cinnamon sugar in them. Advertising on the nose, I guess. Especially when you consider they are Cinnamon & Sugar Flavored.

I tried one very tentatively, as I am sometimes allergic to cinnamon, usually the aroma more than ingesting it. I was feeling funky before I ate the crisp, it was definitely getting to me, only 'Flavored' or not.

The Bride was right on target, just a Pringles crisp with baker's cinnamon sugar on it. A bit too much for me though. Good thing The Bride likes them.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

French Fry Diary 465: Coney Island 2013

First off, this place is open, despite what FourSquare or Yelp may say, as of January 2013, Coney Island is most definitely open. Consider the sign from Clerks up in their window.

This time, I got the cheese fries, which is to say, the same great fries we got last time, but with a couple generous ladles of hot orange cheese on top. It's the kind of cheese that's perfect on a Philly cheesesteak. Very tasty.

I also got onion rings to see if they would be as good as the fries were last time (and this). I was not disappointed. They were made fresh, beer battered, and deep fried. They were very good hot, but as they cooled, not so much.

The hot dogs, and the price for a filling lunch, were still very good. I still have all high marks for Coney Island, I will definitely come back if it's possible.

Monday, February 25, 2013

French Fry Diary 464: Olive Garden

Olive Garden is the quintessential Italian restaurant chain in the United States. There's very little on the menu that doesn't come with some form of pasta. So as you might imagine, being a catastrophically picky eater who's not really into pasta, there's not much for me to get there. Surprisingly though, they do have one or two items I really like, so yeah, I do dig Olive Garden quite a bit.

We actually used to go frequently, it was our default anniversary dinner out for quite a few years. We recently made plans for dinner with a couple of friends we hadn't seen in quite some time, and decided on Olive Garden, as we had not been in a while, and it fit one of the couple's vegetarian needs. So I figured, what better time to review their potato product?

First though, like Red Lobster, one of Olive Garden's best features is their bread, in this case, the Breadsticks. About eight inches long and an inch wide each, baked and buttered garlic bread sticks, these are a terrific start to ant visit to the restaurant.

Besides the Breadsticks, I normally get the mixed grill, steak and chicken grilled on a kabob with vegetables, including onions and peppers, all marinated in a rosemary glaze. Since Olive Garden doesn't have French fries (not even on the kids menu!) the mixed grill comes with Tuscan potatoes.

The Tuscan potatoes are lightly seasoned, sometimes peeled, and chunked potatoes which seem to be deep-fried crispy but not greasy. Perhaps they are baked, but baked to the point where one might think they were deep-fried. If they are, it certainly begs the question, why couldn't Olive Garden have French fries?

Either way, these potato chunks are very good, and worth the trip to Olive Garden for fans of the favorite fried food. A great night with good friends and good food. And don't forget the Breadsticks!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Friday, February 22, 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

French Fry Diary 463: Ole Salty's Regular Salt

Next up from the Bag o' Chips, that The Bride got me for Christmas this year, a selection of rare potato chips from Anchor's Food Finds, we have the scariest bag of the bunch - Ole Salty's Regular Salt.

This is a silver bag of chips with just a label, almost as if it was astronaut food. Not even an expiration date. Folks, it does not even say 'potato chips' on the bag. The ingredients however assure me whatever it is, it's made of potatoes, soybean oil, and salt.

Ole Salty's of Rockford Illinois is a mail order only company, and this scary plain silver bag had no expiration date. Ole Salty also sells popcorn, dips, among other things, and also chips of lesser and more salt added. The packaging appears the same for that stuff. I guess it's a thing. Foil does keep sunlight out, which is not so good for chips in long exposures.

Only one thing to do. Open the bag. Not the easiest job in the world. So difficult, they could sell these things at Trader Joe's. Once open, this extra large snack-size bag yielded, as noted, a 1.25 ounce serving of chips, filling roughly the bottom third of the bag.

These chips are rather small but very crunchy, perhaps kettle cooked. Their taste is a bit of a cross between Munchos and Lays regular chips, a little greasy. Perhaps the Extra Salt might be better, because these are a little bland. For something called Ole Salty's, these chips needed salt.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Random Tater Pic of the Day #88

My friend Deb sent me this one. They are so decadently good I can feel the weight gain and extra cholesterol just by looking at them … these are Bacon Wrapped Sweet Potato French fries... Mmmm... fries...

Find the recipe here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Daddy, Why Did You Eat My Fries?

A fan made video set to the notorious song from "Adventure Time" that may make sense of that post from a few weeks back. Weeeeirrrrdd, but still, mmmmm... fries...

Monday, February 18, 2013

French Fry Diary 462: Toto Fresco, Medford NJ

I had to run down to Medford to the DMV, which was a mercilessly brief task, and leaving I saw a sign for a mini-cheesesteak for only $3.49. It was lunchtime, and I've been on a cheesesteak kick lately, so I went into Toto Fresco.

The place seemed pretty typical for a pizza place, but very warm and friendly. Sadly, I haven't seen that in a while. I watched as they made my order, quickly and seemingly efficiently. My order was up, and I headed home. The food stayed warm and smelled terrific the whole ride home.

When I got home however and opened the bag, it wasn't all happiness unfortunately. The mini-cheesesteak, actually of a pretty fair size, with American cheese on an awesome sesame seed kaiser roll, wasn't bad at all. I would get it again in a heartbeat. Nice sandwich, nice price.

The French fries on the other hand, were not so good. The deep fried Invisicoat regular cuts were so greasy they had soaked through the wax paper bag they were in. Once the bag was torn off, I was left with a clump of fries. Yeah, they were stuck together in the shape of the bag. Also for Invisicoat fries they were epic fails as they had no crunch, just an all big soft greasy sog.

The next time I'm down that way, I would definitely go again. I liked Toto Fresco. Maybe I'll get the mini, or try a full sandwich, and get those steak cut onion rings I saw on the menu. But stay away from the fries.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Florida Fries?

Awesome French Fry sculpture at the University of Florida
The Bride and I are in the midst of planning a vacation for this coming September. We'll be taking a week-long cruise on the majestic Disney Fantasy, bookended on each end by a few days in the Orlando Florida area.

I'm counting on my Florida homies now. Terry, Gail, even the French Fry Fairy - I'm looking at you folks, and anyone else who has a suggestion - where are the good (or bad) fries in that area of the Sunshine State?

We will probably be hitting Raglan Road and Hamburger Mary's, but where else should we be going for fries? Please let me know!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

French Fry Diary 461: Deep River Rosemary & Olive Oil Potato Chips

Here's the first entry from the bag o' rare chips from Anchor's Food Finds that The Bride got me for Christmas. One, the Avocado Oil Chilean Lime Potato Chips I have already reviewed when I found them locally. You can check that out here. The rest were pretty new to me.

Next up from the "Bag o' Chips" are Rosemary & Olive Oil Kettle Cooked Potato Chips from Deep River Snacks. They make a wide variety of interesting flavors of potato chips, as well as tortilla chips, popcorn, and baked fries. Among their other flavors are zesty jalapeƱo, New York spicy dill pickle, aged cheddar horseradish, and sweet Maui onion (I think there actually might be one of these in the Bag o' Chips), as well as regular stuff like mesquite BBQ and original salted.

These are terrific kettle chips, thick and crunchy, twisted with nooks and crannies, and excellent for dipping. As soon as the bag is open, that rosemary and very garlic aroma hits you, the same flavor that makes rosemary baked potatoes so good. Very flavorful, a nice change of pace for the potato chip form. I like these fancy chips.

And bonus, Deep River Snacks is a snack partner with Autism Speaks. Great chips, and a great cause.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Bobby Deen's Fish and Chips

"Not My Mama's Meals" is an intriguing concept for a Food Network/Cooking Channel program. It's got Bobby Deen, Paula Deen's son, turning out healthier spins on his mother's recipes. So, leaner, lighter, with all the flavor, and not sooo much butter.

In the second season episode, "Boys' Night," Bobby tries his hand at his momma's over 900 calorie fish and chips, bringing it down to roughly 300. Quite a challenge. His secret - he's using sweet potatoes, and he's baking them.

Check out the recipe here. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Perfect Fries for Valentine's

I guess The Bride knows me too well. For Valentine's Day she got me, among other things, this nifty little fry cutter called Perfect Fries. It looks quick and simple, I can't wait to try it.

Thanks, honey, Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Potato That Slices You!

Marvel and Hasbro have recently announced a new line of Mr. Potato Heads featuring Marvel Super Heroes. They include Wolverine (shown here), Thor, and Iron Man. More info can be found here.

Thanks to Becca for hipping me to this one via the FaceBook.


Hi folks,

Just a quick note of apology for my disappearance, and the lack of blog entries here for a bit. 

The fried food frivolity will re-commence this afternoon.  Thanks for understanding. 

The Management