Despite the name, french fries have become a staple of American cooking techniques. While these delicious golden potatoes are usually served beside a juicy burger or savory sandwich, french fries can be much more than just a plain, old side dish. Luckily, you can take your fries to the next level whether you bring home leftovers from a restaurant or make them fresh at home. Here are five tips for upgrading your french fries:
1. Make a homemade sauce
The Idaho Potato Commission recommends elevating the flavor of your french fries by making a unique and tasty homemade sauce. If you’re more of a traditionalist, try whipping up a spicy ketchup or barbecue sauce from scratch. For more adventurous french fry connoisseurs, consider an avocado aioli or horseradish sauce.
2. Top your fries with cheese
Cheese is the perfect ingredient for adding extra flavor to any hearty potato dish. Try melting some cheddar cheese on your basket of french fries with chili to create an American classic or top them with fresh cheese curds and gravy to make a delicious poutine.
3. Throw leftovers in the waffle iron
No one likes to throw away a big pile of french fries, but the leftovers can get soft and mushy, losing that crisp, fresh-from-the-fryer texture. If you have a waffle iron, Serious Eats recommends loading your leftover fries into the device to create pull-apart waffle fries. This method of reheating your fries not only gives them a new aesthetic, but also allows your soggy leftovers to regain their crispy texture.
4. Add herbs and spices
If you’re making french fries at home, some fresh herbs and spices can really kick the flavor up a notch. For example, chef Michael Symon recommends adding rosemary and garlic to your fries for the final minute they are frying. Another option is to make Cajun fries by sprinkling on some paprika and cayenne pepper. Of course, a little salt and pepper also goes a long way as well.
5. Make it a full meal
Similar to hash browns, french fries can provide an excellent base for a more substantial dish. The Daily Meal suggests making a delicious chicken parmesan and serving it over a bed of hot, crispy fries. Texturally, the fries add a bit of crunch to this classic Italian dish and also serve as a perfect vehicle for enjoying any leftover marinara sauce and parmesan cheese.