An Unexpected Tool to Make the Best Fries At Home

May  4, 2018

It's no secret we're big fans of Nigella Lawson. From her recipes—a crowdpleasing dense loaf cake, a revolutionary one-step, no-churn coffee ice cream, and an unfussy dinner hero, the pea-packed chicken traybake—to her effortless menu-planning philosophy, we look to Nigella to give us solutions when we want some ease and calm (not to mention deliciousness) in the kitchen.

Enter Nigella's newest cookbook, At My Table: A Celebration of Home Cooking. Other than being a collection of her personally cherished recipes, it's an invitation to spend more time in your kitchen, with the food that makes you feel good to cook. If you're Nigella, this means Parmesan French toast, slow roasted pork shoulder with caramelized garlic and ginger, and intriguing (and wholly necessary) "emergency brownies." This also means some totally hard-to-mess-up shoestring fries, courtesy of a tool you probably already have in your drawer, but have never thought to use in this way before: a spiralizer.

These crispy-crunchy snacks are only a swirl and a shallow-fry away. Photo by Bobbi Lin

That's right! The same kitchen helper that makes pretty ribbons of zucchini and carrots that you can slurp up like spaghetti will also get you to the crispiest, curliest, easiest fries at home. After peeling some multi-purpose potatoes, like Yukon Golds, work your spiralizer magic on its finest round-cutter setting and dunk the potato curlicues in some hot oil to crisp up. No chopping, soaking, or parboiling required.

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Nigella, feeling "mischievous" as she was developing this recipe, was "mindful of the several tons of spiralizers lying dormant in kitchen cupboards up and down the length of the country." But she quickly found a new use for them. "While you will never find me making zoodles or allowing any other vegetable to masquerade as pasta," vows Nigella, "I can say this for my spiralizer: it does make very fine shoestring fries."

We're sold—the path of least resistance to golden brown and delicious is the only one for us, and perfectly embodies At My Table's sensibility. Nigella puts it best in the book's introduction: "Life is complicated; cooking doesn't have to be."

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Brinda is the Director of Content at Food52, where she oversees all site content across Food52 and Home52. She likes chewy Neapolitan pizza, stinky cheese of all sorts, and tahini-flavored anything. Brinda lives in Brooklyn with 18 plants and at least one foster pup (sometimes more). Find her at @brindayesterday on Twitter and Instagram.