The Extra Step For Crispier French Fries

French fries, sticks of fried potato, called by any other name (hello, the somewhat embarrassing Freedom fries trend of 2003) should always be crispy: This rule applies to all styles of french fries, from standard cut to thin cut to waffle fries to curly fries to wedge fries, which, incidentally, are the least preferred type of french fry. On the other hand, the popularity of thin cut fries is likely due to the influence of McDonald's thin-cut fries that were originally made using desert-dried potatoes, which resulted in ultra crispy fries.

If you've tasked yourself with making french fries at home, there are a few tips and tricks for homemade fries that don't include needing access to a desert, like using a fry cutter, using an air fryer, double frying, and using the right kind of cooking oil. Soaking your cut potatoes the night before in cold water before turning them into french fries is another key for the perfect homemade fries. But if you're short on time, there's another extra step to take for crispy french fries.

Blanch your potatoes for the perfect fries

Kelly Dobkin attended the French Culinary Institute and came back with some professional tips for home chefs that want to make the ultimate french fries: "The secret is to briefly poach them in boiling water (or 'blanch' them) before they go into the hot oil. This ensures that the fries are cooked all the way through before getting crisped up in the fryer," Dobkin writes for Bon Appétit.

To get the right pre-cooking texture of your potatoes, it's important to get the blanching step right and not accidentally parboil your spuds. According to Howdy Kitchen, one needs to bring a pot of water to a boil (enough to submerge all of your fries) and then put in the fries for around 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the thickness. In the meantime, prepare a large bowl with water and ice cubes, which is where you'll put the strained potatoes to cool off. After 5 minutes in the ice bath, strain the potatoes, let them dry on top of paper towels, and wait 15 minutes for them to cool down to room temperature. 

Perfectly blanched potatoes will be slightly broken down on their exterior, per Howdy Kitchen.