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Classic French Fries

(recipe, Matthew Amster-Burton)

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Yes, it takes time and two rounds in the fryer, but twice-cooking your fries is the best way to get them both cooked through and browned/crispy. The rest between fryings is not essential, but it helps the potatoes lose moisture. Raw potatoes have a ton of water; fries don't. It's hard to get all that water out in the fryer without overcooking the fries. This recipe is adapted from One Potato, Two Potato, by Roy Finamore and Molly Stevens.


  1. 2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into ¼-inch batons with a mandoline or sharp knife
  2. 2 qt. lard, shortening, or oil
  3. Salt


  1. As you cut the potatoes, transfer them to a bowl of cold water. Refrigerate the bowl of soaking potatoes for at least 2 hours.
  2. Heat the lard, shortening, or oil in an electric deep fryer to 325 degrees.
  3. Drain the potatoes and dry scrupulously. Add about ¼ of the potatoes and fry 3 to 4 minutes, until barely browned and starting to go limp. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining potatoes. Spread the parcooked potatoes on a large baking sheet and refrigerate 2 hours.
  4. Heat the oil to 375 degrees. Working in batches again, fry the potatoes 3 to 4 minutes, until deep golden brown and crispy. Drain on paper towels, season with salt, and serve immediately.