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National Chip Week

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February 27, 2015 / English / By
Nicola

Last week celebrated National Chip Week in the United Kingdom. If you didn’t hear about it at the time – or if you just didn’t get a chance to take part – then that doesn’t mean you have to miss out completely. It’s never too late for chips.

 

As cheap as easy as they might be, frozen oven chips are actually not the best chips to make if you want a tasty potato treat. They’re packed full of salt and other preservatives, which is bad enough for you as it is, but I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that fresh food is always healthier.

 

Instead, many people might turn to a traditional fish and chip shop for the best, tastiest, largest portion of chips. I’ll admit that they are melt-in-the-mouth delicious, but chips from the chippie are salty, deep fried, and not to mention expensive.

 

Believe it or not, the all-round winner when it comes to enjoying a portion of chips is to make them yourself. To create hand-cut chips or wedges means that you can make them as fine or as chunky as you like, and there doesn’t have to be any unhealthy frying involved. Of course, you can be adventurous with your flavour choices, creating chips that taste even better than those you can buy anywhere else.

 

To begin with, take a medium potato that’s about the same size as your hand. This should create a good portion size for one person. I prefer to peel mine, but you might want to make skin-on chips or wedges. It’s often said that potato skins contain a large amount of nutrients, so the choice is yours.

 

Once you’ve made your decision about whether to keep the skins or not, cut your potato into slices, then chop each layer into long chips. Cut them as finely or as thickly as you like, but a general rule of thumb is to keep them no fatter than your fingers.

 

Place all the chips into a large saucepan full of water. It’s important that the water is still cold or room temperature, rather than already boiling. Only once your chips are in the water should you place the pan on the hob and turn it on, bringing the water to the boil.

 

As the water just starts to boil, remove the pan from the heat and drain the potatoes. It can be difficult to judge exactly when to do this, but wait until the water is starting to bubble furiously. Don’t be tempted to remove the pan from the hob any earlier (for example when you can only see small fizz-like bubbles) as your chips won’t be cooked properly.

 

After you’ve drained all the water off, place your chips in a bowl and leave them to cool properly. Meanwhile, heat your oven to 180°C (350°F or Gas Mark 4).

 

When your chips are cool and your oven is warm, drizzle a small amount of oil over the chips. About half a teaspoon per potato (which equates to per serving) should be plenty. Shake the chips so that they all end up lightly covered in oil.

 

Place them on a baking sheet in the centre of the oven for 20-25 minutes. About ten minutes in, shake the baking sheet to move the chips and turn them over, ensuring that they’re cooked well on all sides. By the end of the cooking time they should be starting to turn golden brown.

 

Remove the chips from the oven and sprinkle them with seasonings of your choice, making sure that they’re all evenly covered. Traditional flavours might include salt and vinegar or sea salt and crushed black pepper, but flex your creative culinary muscles to see what other options you can come up with. Some of my favourites include a sprinkling of aromat (find it with the other herbs and spices in the seasoning aisle), cheese, rosemary or even chilli. One delicious variation is to use sweet potatoes to make the chips instead of ordinary potatoes – these taste so good that you’ll wonder how you ever lived before!

 

'Mmm... sweet potato fries' by jeffreyw via Flickr

 

 

Whatever you decide, you’ll agree that this is a really simple way to make some great tasting chips at home. This method does take a little time, but it’s worth it – you can’t rush good chips. National Chip Week might be over, but with this recipe you now have everything you need to enjoy good, healthy, delicious chips all year round!

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Country: United Kingdom

Province/State: Wiltshire

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Price Guide:N/A (What's this?) N/A = home cooked meal,etc
$ = street food, fast food,etc
$$ = bistro, cafe, pub, bar,etc
$$$ = fine dining,etc

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