When I first saw this challenge I immediately thought of a great restaurant in Baltimore, MD called Salt Tavern. They serve this sinfully delicious appetizer - duck fat french fries with three aiolis for dipping: chipotle, malt vinegar, and black truffle. I immediately knew I would have to try my hand at reproducing this dish at home.
The duck fat fries recipe comes from a conglomeration of sources online and basically uses the two part cooking technique that produces the most crisp french fries, whether or not you are using duck fat. If you can't find duck fat locally, you can purchase it online at D'artagnan.
The aioli recipe uses a modified base provided in Food52's aioli primer and adds the three flavors that Salt Tavern serves. This method works really well because you can create one basic aioli and add a few ingredients to make three separate dipping sauces! - meganvt01 —meganvt01
Test Kitchen Notes
I love the double fry technique and being fried in rich, luscious duck fat certainly doesn't hurt. The sprinkling of parsley and garlic was a nice touch. The recipe gives you three dipping sauces for the price of one. The aioli came together beautifully and each of the three flavors are wonderful in their own way. I'll have to admit I am always partial to the combination of fries and malt vinegar and loved using aioli as the vehicle for the sour-salty combination. You may want to add the truffle oil to suit your tastes (without overwhelming your guests, of course.) - biffbourgeois —Stephanie Bourgeois
After your potatoes are cooled, cut them into fries - I like thick steak fries so you have lots of crispy exterior. Place the fries into a bowl of cool water for 5 minutes to remove some of the starch.
Take the fries from the water and blot them dry really well. Let the fries sit on a dry paper towels while you heat the fat.
Heat the duck fat in a large saucepan over medium high heat until the temperature reaches 330 degrees. Place the fries, one by one, into the oil. Maintain the heat and cook for 6 minutes until golden brown.
Remove the fries from the fat and allow them to rest for 10 minutes while you raise the heat of the fat to 360. Place the fries into the duck fat and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes or until the fries are crispy and dark golden brown.
Immediately after removing the fries, season liberally with salt and pepper and sprinkle over the garlic and parsley.
Using a mortar and pestle, grind the salt into the garlic cloves until the garlic is finely mashed and the salt is combined.
Place the garlic and salt into a medium bowl and whisk in egg yolks and lemon juice. Slowly add the canola oil, a few drops at a time until the mixture starts to hold together. Then drizzle in the remaining canola oil whisking constantly.
Add the olive oil using the same slow drizzle and constant whisking method. Just a word of caution - after making a few batches I realized that how big the egg yolks are makes a difference in the volume of oil you can incorporate and reach a particular consistency. Here, just use your best cook judgement and stop when you get to a good thick mayo-like consistency.
After the aioli base is together, separate the base into three separate small bowls. In one bowl, whisk in the chipotle. In the other bowl, whisk in the malt vinegar. In the final bowl, slowly whisk in the black truffle oil. Taste each for seasoning.
After spending years in school while working full time, I'm happy to finally have my evenings pursuing my other passion, cooking! I have a 4 year old boy and a husband that are both adventurous eaters and supportive tasters. I spend a good bit of my vacation travel preparation researching local and regional foods and my friends all make fun of my food obsession.
I've always been pretty confident with my techniques cooking from recipes but I am enjoying Food52's challenge of putting those techniques to work for my own versions of my favorite foods. I love to learn and the group of people that contribute to this site are a great resource.
As an Annapolis native, I love to cook with our local produce and seafood whenever possible. I try to support our community of fisherman, farmers, other food producers and chefs as much as possible.