The quintessential side, french fries – or frites, if you prefer – are always better when made with duck fat. Something akin to alchemy happens when potatoes and duck fat get together. Golden and crispy with tender, creamy interiors and a hint of delicious duckiness, these will be the new standard against which all fries are measured. Read on for the how-to and shop duck fat at dartagnan.com.
First, Get Your Duck Fat
Maybe you planned ahead for this day and stored some rendered duck fat in your freezer from the last time you roasted a whole duck or seared duck breasts.
You will need enough to completely cover the potatoes as they are cooking, about 2 or 3 inches in the bottom of a pot. So if you don’t have enough rendered duck fat on hand, supplement with our convenient rendered duck fat.
Prep Your Potatoes
The russet potato is the ideal frying potato. Peel the skin for more refined frites, or scrub the skin well and leave on for a more rustic fry. Cut potatoes into sticks between 1/4-inch and 1/2-inch wide. Rinse the cut potatoes in cold water to remove any excess starch. If you have the time, soaking them in ice water for 30 minutes will yield even better results. Drain the potatoes before frying and pat them dry.
Learn the Correct Frying Technique
- The secret to the perfect french fry in any fat is the double-fry method. The first fry is to cook the potato through. The second fry at a higher temperature is to crisp them up.
- Melt the duck fat in a heavy-bottomed pot with high sides. Heat the fat to about 325 degrees F. A deep-frying/candy thermometer is really handy for getting an accurate reading.
- Cook the potato sticks in small batches to avoid dramatically dropping the temperature of the hot fat. After about 5 to 7 minutes, test the doneness by poking a fry with a knife. The knife should slide in and out with no resistance.
- If the potatoes are cooked through, remove them from the pot with a slotted spoon, spider skimmer, or tongs and drain on a sheet tray covered in paper towels. After all of the batches are cooked and cooled, raise the heat under the pot and bring the melted duck fat to 350 degrees F.
- Return the fries to the pot, in batches again, for only about 1 minute. Drain on fresh paper towels.
- Sprinkle them right away with your choice of sea salt, black pepper, paprika, parmesan cheese, fresh herbs, or whatever seasonings you like. Doing this step while the fries are still hot will help the seasonings to stick.
Consider Dipping Sauces
Your duck fat french fries will be perfect by themselves. However, take this one step further by whipping up a dipping sauce. Try serving them with mayonnaise mixed with fresh herbs or take your frites over the top with a drizzle of truffle oil. Upgrade the old standby and make your own ketchup with roasted red peppers and garlic.
Don’t Waste the Duck Fat!
The best thing about duck fat is that you can re-use it. After your fries are done, let the duck fat cool so it is easy to handle but not solidified. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer to remove any pieces of potato. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled and then freeze. You will thank us later. For the bonus round, here are 10 ways to cook with duck fat.
Tell us about your duck fat fries in the comments!
Since 1985, D’Artagnan has been at the forefront of the farm-to-table movement, producing superior tasting products by partnering with small ranches and farms. We are committed to free-range, natural production, sustainable and humane farming practices and no use of antibiotics or hormones. That’s why D’Artagnan products have been revered by America’s most renowned chefs for over 30 years. We offer the same high-quality products to home cooks at dartagnan.com, along with recipes and guides to help you live the tasty life.
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