If I had to count one of my guiltiest of pleasures it would be fries, hands down. It’s not that anything enjoyed in moderation is a problem, but when it comes to deep frying potatoes, I usually cannot control myself. I’ve even gone as far as calling them by their British counterpart in an effort to minimize my fry consumption. It just sounds better, no? Fortunately for me I’ve learned that I must keep them in moderation. It’s that necessary.
And then I began to think. If I really love French fries, I mean really really love them, shouldn’t I do something special, something out of the ordinary, so that I can savor them and appreciate every single bite? I’m not talking about dunking haphazardly cut potatoes into oil and dousing them with salt here. I’m talking about taking a variety of spices like paprika, blending them into a seasoning for russet potatoes, and adding it after frying. But what are fries without a friend? I’ve taken roasted garlic, mayonnaise, cumin and white pepper and created a savory dipping sauce for my spice-dusted fries and can I tell you one thing? It’s pure heaven. And since creating this recipe I’ve found that the spice mixture also works great on potato chips. But that’s a whole other guilty pleasure, I’m telling you.
PAPRIKA CHIPS WITH ROASTED GARLIC-CUMIN AIOLI
2 lbs russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 4 x ½ x ½ inch sticks
2 Tablespoons Spice Islands Mediterranean Sea Salt
1 ½ Tablespoons Spice Islands Smoked Paprika
2 teaspoons Spice Islands Onion Powder
1 teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Mustard
½ teaspoon Spice Islands Garlic Pepper
2 quarts peanut oil
Roasted Garlic-Cumin Aioli:
½ cup mayonnaise
6 garlic cloves, roasted
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 Tablespoon Spice Islands Ground Cumin Seed
1 ½ teaspoons salt
¾ teaspoon Spice Islands Ground White Pepper
1. Place cut potatoes in a large bowl and submerge in cold water for 30 minutes.
2. While the potatoes soak, mix together the salt, paprika, onion powder, ground mustard, and garlic pepper in a small bowl until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
3. Place the oil in a deep fryer or a 5-quart pot and preheat to 350°F.
4. Drain the potatoes and spread them in a single layer on two baking sheets, lined with paper towels.
5. Place paper towels over the potatoes and gently press to remove any excess water.
6. In batches, blanch the potatoes for 2-3 minutes and drain onto paper towels.
7. Once all the potatoes have been blanched, set aside and bring the temperature of the oil up to 365°F.
8. Place all the aioli ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth.
9. Transfer to a small bowl, adjust seasonings and cover until ready to use.
10. In batches, fry the blanched potatoes for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown, carefully stirring to prevent sticking.
11. Drain onto paper towels and sprinkle liberally with the paprika seasoning blend. Gently toss until well combined.
12. Serve hot with a side of the aioli for dipping.