Frites (French Fries)
Steak-frites are the classic French bistro dish. In chef Michel Richard's version, these crispy fries accompany his steak with a shallot glaze.
- 2 pounds (about 8 medium) russet potatoes, peeled, sliced lengthwise, and cut into 1/4-to-3/8-inch-wide sticks
- Peanut oil, (about 4 Cups), for deep frying
Place potatoes in a large bowl of cold water. Change the water repeatedly to remove the potato starch until the water remains clear. (Potatoes can be prepared a few hours ahead to this point and set aside at room temperature in a bowl covered with cold water. Drain before cooking.) Dry the potatoes well in a lettuce spinner and with a clean bath towel.
Line two large baking sheets with paper towels. Heat oil to 350 degrees in a wok or large pot. Fry potatoes in small batches without crowding until completely cooked, but barely colored, turning occasionally. Transfer to the prepared sheets in a single layer using a slotted spoon. (Potatoes can be prepared a few hours ahead to this point and set aside at room temperature.)
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line another baking sheet with paper towels. Reheat oil to 350 degrees. Fry potatoes again in small batches until crisp and golden brown, turning occasionally. Transfer cooked potatoes to the prepared sheet using a slotted spoon, and keep them warm in the oven while cooking the remaining potatoes. Sprinkle with salt, and serve immediately.