It was Alex who started it. She loves French fries but, after recently discovering the mandoline (mandolin slicer) and how easy it is to use, she decided yesterday that she’d make potato chips. And she did. I must admit that we have a terrible weakness for potato chips. I can say “pass” to all other junk food but I sort of go weak in the knees with potato chips. And I like chips made from real potatoes rather than processed potato starch. Kettle-cooked, preferably, which are, unfortunately, rather pricey.
So it’s a good thing that Alex started us on this homemade potato chip ride. Homemade potato chips are additive-free, less expensive and very easy to make. It’s a fun family activity too. Alex cooked a batch of potato chips and, a few minutes later, Speedy and I had joined her in the kitchen and we were slicing and frying thinly sliced potatoes too. I even managed to take photos.
You only need a very sharp knife and a frying pan. But if you want uniformly sliced potatoes, I recommend a mandoline (mandolin slicer).
A mandolin slicer had two parts — the part with teeth which comes between the blade and your hand so you won’t get nasty cuts, and the part with the blade.
But we find it more convenient to just dispense with the part with the teeth.
To use the mandolin slicer, just slide the potato (or whatever vegetable you’d like to slice) over the blade with a little pressure and in a back and forth motion. Careful not to let your skin touch the blade.
The thickness of the slices can be adjusted. Some mandolin slicers have a knob on the side and you twist it to adjust the thickness. Ours has a little bar underneath with four settings in millimeters — 0.5, 1.3, 2.0 and 3.0. I used the 1.3 mm. setting for my potato chips. That’s what you see in these photos. Alex preferred the 0.5 mm. setting.
To make potato chips, heat plenty of vegetable cooking oil even before you start slicing the potatoes. Ideally, the oil should already be hot when you slice the potatoes so that the potato slices can go straight into the hot oil before they start to discolor. It takes only a minute or so for the potato slices to get cooked.
Scoop out the potato slices, remove the excess oil by placing them on a stack of paper towels, sprinkle with salt and enjoy your delicious homemade potato chips.