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French Fry Cutters - How To Make Your Own French Fries From Scratch

Updated on February 24, 2012

When you get that craving you often have no alternative but to give in to the temptation. That means a trip to your favorite fast food joint, a dive into the freezer for a frozen store bought package, or, if you’re a smart cook, it means reaching for the French fry cutter to make your own.

Smart chefs go with the latter option because they know you can’t beat the taste of freshly cooked fries made exactly the way you like them with a french fry slicer. It’s easy, quick and healthier as you get to choose exactly how you want to prepare them.. There are no preservatives, no added coloring or other added garbage when you make your own and no cooking them in trans fats or leaving them sitting under a heat lamp for hours until you roll up to the window either. It doesn’t mean you’ll never buy fast food again, but after preparing them fresh you’ll always appreciate how much better your own taste compared to theirs.

Once you learn how to make them from scratch using a French fry chopper you will however, never feel the urge to buy those frozen ones again as it’s quick, easy and healthier to make your own and of course, they taste better the fresher they are.

The Perfect Combination

Weston Restaurant Quality French Fry Cutter (36-3501-W), Cast Iron, Includes Suction Cup Feet
Weston Restaurant Quality French Fry Cutter (36-3501-W), Cast Iron, Includes Suction Cup Feet

Often those created for home use are made from inferior plastic material and are really only large enough to take smaller potatoes. Not so with this utensil which features a heavy duty cast iron body with stainless steel cutting blades. It might not quite be restaurant quality as the name suggests, but it's all metal components will make short work of any home cutting and chopping tasks you put it to work on.

 

Get Yourself A French Fry Slicer

When you do get into the habit of cooking your own from scratch, you will quickly come to appreciate how useful a one of these is for making the perfect batch. Sure, you can cut any vegetable into strips using a knife and then fry them up but it's really hard to get them to a uniform thickness which means you get overcooked and undercooked fries in each batch. Bleurgh!

French fry choppers cut a potato into a full portion of fries in seconds and guarantee the uniform shape and form you get at a fast food joint which helps them cook evenly making them one of the best kitchen gadgets you can buy. Even if you only cook these at home occasionally, you can benefit from the added convenience and uniformity a specialist chopper gives you.

These vegetable chopping gadgets offer several advantages over cutting up potatoes by hand and are a boon to any kitchen and they are so very easy and safe to operate. There are different designs but the basic principle remains the same. The basic style features a place to hold a potato, a square cutting grid with uniformly placed square holes and a fulcrum handle. You simply position the potato in the machine, pull the handle and it is pushed through the cutting grid outputting neatly sliced French fries out the other end. It’s that simple and it takes seconds and doesn't require Herculean strength.

Most French fry makers come with two cutting grids, one for thin and the other for thick cut steak fries but on more advanced machines you can switch out the chopping grid for even more different sizes so you can get various thicknesses from one machine. The important part of all this is that the potatoes are cut to a uniform size and thickness as this is the most important part of ensuring they all cook to the same standard rather than some being undercooked or too crunchy because they are thicker or thinner. Any of these machines will do this better than you can do by hand and it is this initial preparation which means the difference between good and bad fries..

The nice thing about these gadgets are that you are not limited to someone else's version of what's perfect. Not only can you prepare and season them the way you like, and be as inventive as you like. There’s also no need to stick with just plain potatoes either. I use mine as a vegetable chopper also, as they are great for making sweet potato fries but also for chopping vegetables for salad garnish and I’ve used mine in the past for slicing up radishes, carrots, beets and more. They are also good for cucumber and dill pickle spears and I’m sure there are many other great uses too.

Baked French Fries Are A Healthy Alternative

I mentioned before it is healthier to use a french fry maker and make your own from scratch and it is However, you can make it healthier still by skipping the whole 'fry' part of the name and opting instead for oven baked french fries instead. Rather than immersing them in oil you place them on a baking sheet and lightly spray with a your favorite oil. I use an olive oil mister to do this and then you can sprinkle them with a little salt and just pop them in the oven for a healthier but just as tasty snack.

Another alternative is to opt for using sweet potatoes instead which is a different taste but an interesting and healthier alternative to regular potato fries.

French Fries and Great but I Want A Curly Fry Cutter!

If you are one of us who has a hankering for those delicious curly fries then you’ll be pleased to know there is are curly fry makers you can buy as well. These curly fry cutters use a rotary action to cut around the potato using a single blade to cut along the curved surface of the potato. Curly fry cutters typically clamp to a work surface or use suction cups to attach firmly in place while they are in use. Others are wall mountable and must be screwed firmly into an available wall space.

Choosing The Right Product

When you do decide to buy one of these you will want to buy the best one for your personal needs. Most home users will be more than happy with one of the best quality french fry makers aimed at the home market which can be picked up for under $20. That said, these often feature a plastic frame and handle which can have long term durability issues. That's not to say you need to invest in a heavy duty restaurant quality vegetable chopper either. Those commercial french fry cutters for restaurants can cost several hundreds of dollars and whilst, yes, they'll do the job great, it's going to be overkill for home use. Instead, for around $60 - $80 you can find more durable products with cast iron frames and stronger stainless steel blades. If your budget will stretch to that, those are more likely to provide you with trouble free use for longer and a be a more satisfactory long term purchase.

Whichever you set your heart on however, do make sure your chosen product comes with the blade attachment you require, or at least, the option to purchase it as an additional extra. Some come with just a single blade which is fixed in place. Others feature interchangeable blades so you can choose between thin shoestring fries up to thicker steak cut fries as the mood takes you. The variety is nicer but will be a more expensive machine.

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