Reach For The Salad Spinner The Next Time You Make French Fries

Cooked French fries in white bowl
Cooked French fries in white bowl - PHIL LENOIR/Shutterstock

Among the laundry list of iconic American foods everyone should try, French fries take a well-deserved spot at the top. Even though you can buy a delicious serving of crispy French fries at any given restaurant or fast food joint across the U.S., there's nothing quite like cooking up a batch of delectable spuds right at home. Most professional and home chefs alike have their own special ways of crafting the perfect fry but one aspect most can agree on is a solid pre-fry soak.

When you make homemade French fries, after you slice your potatoes down into strips, soaking these raw spuds in water is necessary to remove residual starch and keep your potatoes from turning a muted shade of brown. Since water and oil don't mix, apart from patting down your freshly soaked potato strips, you may want to bust out your salad spinner to remove as much water as possible. The benefit of using a salad spinner speeds up the potato drying process by removing the extra water that's slow to drain. Simply add your potato strips to the inside basket of your spinner and give it a whirl. Before we reveal more helpful tips when making homemade fries, let's touch on a few pointers you should adhere to when using your trusted spinner to drain raw potatoes.

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A Salad Spinner Is The Kitchen Gadget You Need To Remove That Pesky French Fry Water

Empty salad spinner next to vegetables
Empty salad spinner next to vegetables - Al62/Getty Images

Whether you're throwing your precious potatoes in a hot oil bath or making oven-baked homemade French fries, giving potatoes a premeditated cold water rinse is essential: Beyond leaching out extra starch and sugar, water adds a necessary firmness to your spuds. When you're ready to soak and spin your potato strips, fill the outer basin with cold water and add potatoes. Add a bit of vinegar or lemon juice to the water to avoid oxidation. If you have a small spinner, you may need to use a large mixing bowl to soak, transferring the potato strips to your spinner in batches.

To effectively remove water, don't overcrowd the inner basket with potatoes. Add a handful or two at a time, spinning and dumping excess water as necessary. Salad spinners are useful since they eliminate that extended period you'd have to wait for your potatoes to dry out. After a solid spin, place raw potato strips on a few paper towels to ensure a dry exterior before baking or frying. In the end, your salad spinner dries watery potatoes which may have been the cause of your cooking oil going haywire or preventing that precious fat from seeping into the inside flesh of your French fries. Now that you've found another useful way to utilize your salad spinner, can you also use this one-off kitchen gadget to remove excess fry oil?

Salad Spinners May Or May Not Be Useful For Other Steps In The Fry-Making Process

wet sliced potato on paper towel
wet sliced potato on paper towel - a1vector/Shutterstock

While you might use tarragon to upgrade French fries, most home chefs have their own seasoning blend for perfectly flavorful potatoes. Beyond using your salad spinner to remove excess fry water, you might also use this kitchen tool to evenly spread your French fries' spices. For every batch of fries dried in your spinner, add a teaspoon or so of seasoning and give the spinner a few pumps for even distribution. This appliance may also be useful for removing excess fry oil after the cooking process. After you deep fry or bake your potatoes, try giving them a spin to remove extra oil but be wary of temperature restraints.

While your spinner may be able to effectively remove excess oil, enclosing hot potatoes in your salad spinner may cause them to steam and become soft. Additionally, keep in mind that unless you own a glass spinner, most salad spinners are made of plastic. Adding seasoned, hot, oil-filled fries to an appliance that only rinses and dries produce may not be the best decision. Cleaning your salad spinner once it has been soaked in oil and an array of different spices may lead to residual aromas or flavors left in your spinner, too. Even though the jury is still out on whether or not salad spinners should be used to remove leftover oil, using this appliance to remove excess water is pure brilliance and will only lead to crispier French fries.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.