These fries remind me of something you’d order at an upscale bar or a trendy Mexican restaurant as an appetizer for a crowd. Although they are definitely filling and big enough to split as a meal between two people. They’re best eaten with a fork but I won’t judge if you dive into them with your fingers.
These French fries are fully loading. And by that I mean, they have all the toppings you’d need or want. Shredded Monterrey jack cheese, homemade white queso, pico de Gallo, fresh jalapeño and cilantro.
How do you get crispy homemade fries?
If you’ve never made homemade fries before, don’t be intimidated. It’s actually much easier than you think. Will it make a mess? Absolutely. A mess is hard to escape when frying anything. My one tip would be to not skip the soaking process. Soaking the potatoes in water will draw out all the starch. Less starch means crispier fries. This step is a must so be sure to take the extra time and soak the potatoes. Next step is frying. Double frying the potatoes is what I think makes the crispiest fries. First you will fry the fries at 300 degrees F. Then remove them and turn the oil temp up to 400 degrees F and fry again. This change of temp is crucial. The first frying temp is to soften and cook the fries. The second frying temp is to crisp the exterior. This way you’ll get that restaurant quality French fry you long for. Lastly, be sure to toss the fries with seasoning as soon as they come out of the hot oil. The oil will help the seasoning stick. If you wait to season the fries, the spices will bounce right off. So please season immediately.
The rest of the recipe is pretty straight forward and easy to accomplish for even beginner cooks. I’m obsessed with these fries and have made them for dinner for my husband and I a handful of times. It is quite a bit of work but totally worth it in the end. Nothing beats homemade hand cut fries topped with cheese and steak.
CARNE ASADA FRIES
Prep time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Total time: 2 hours
- 2 russet potatoes
- 5 cups canola oil, or your favorite high temp oil
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp chili powder
For carne asada:
- 10-12 oz sirloin or filet mignon steak
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup Monterrey jack cheese, shredded
- 1 jalapeño, diced into rounds
- 1/4 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
- For queso: CLASSIC WHITE QUESO
- For pico: SIMPLE PICO DE GALLO
- Mix the salt, onion powder and chili powder together. Set aside for later use.
- Start by washing and scrubbing the potatoes thoroughly. You can peel your potatoes or leave the skins on. It’s your preference. I like the skins on. Cut the potatoes lengthwise into long rectangular shapes about 1/2 inch thick. Try your best to make each fry the same size so that they cook evenly.
- Immerse the fries into a bowl of cold water in order to draw out the starch. Allow to soak in the water for 1 hour. Once done soaking, dry the potatoes on paper towels. Be sure to dry them completely before frying.
- Heat a large pot (I use my 7 qt. Le Creuset) with the canola oil to 300 degrees F. (Use a thermometer to gage temperature and adjust throughout cooking when necessary). The oil should come up to about half way in the pot. (Adjust the amount of oil if necessary).
- Begin to cook your potatoes in batches (do not overcrowd the pot). Cook the potatoes at 300 degrees for about 5 minutes until they are tender and slightly golden. (They will be tender yet not crispy at this point.)
- Remove the potatoes from the oil with a slotted spoon. I like to use a tool called a spider. Drain on paper towels. Repeat till all the potatoes are cooked.
- Once cooked, bring the temp of the oil up to 400 degrees F. Add the fries back into the hotter oil and cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown and crisp. Again, be sure to fry the potatoes in batches so that the pot is not overcrowded. This will help create a crispy fry. Repeat till all the fries are fried and then quickly drain them on paper towels.
- As soon as the fries come out of the oil, toss the fries with the seasoning. This is important to do immediately so that the seasoning sticks to the oil still adhering to the fries.
For carne asada:
- Mix together all the spices and season all sides of the steak with this.
- Heat a cast iron skillet to medium high heat and add in the olive oil.
- Add the steak to the hot pan and cook for about 5 minutes a side for medium rare. (You may also use a meat thermometer to gage temperature if you are unsure. Medium rare: 130-135 degrees F. Medium: 135-140 degrees F.)
- Remove the steak from the pan and allow to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Once rested, slice the steak into bite sized chunks.
- Preheat the oven to a high broil.
- Place the fries close together on a sheet pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper underneath. Drizzle with a few spoonfuls of queso and sprinkle with the Monterrey jack cheese. Broil in the oven for 1-2 minutes until the cheese is melted.
- Top with pico de gallo, jalapeño and fresh cilantro. Plus more queso on the side for dipping. (Pico and queso are linked in ingredients section).
- Best eaten when hot.