French Fry Testing: Week 1

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries

While I’m no stranger to the crispy and golden world of fries, I honestly had never tried Alexia Foods natural fries until I was invited to participate in their “Reinventing a Classic” challenge. My first week focused on taste testing as many varieties of their fry products as I could handle. This approach is allowing me gain a better understanding of the taste, texture and cooking processes the brand has to offer.

Next week is when the real fun begins. I plan to take what I learned during the taste testing and really focus on developing a new flavor worthy of the Culinary Cory kitchen of fame. I’m looking forward with sharing my adventures, and possible misadventures, later in the week.

Rosemary Garlic Wedges

Here are a few observations I made while taste testing this week:

Flavors: Alexia offers a nice variety of classic favorites and creative flavor options. The seasonings on the flavored options are wonderfully balanced and almost always include a combination of layered seasonings. Of course, no one will go wrong with the classic crinkle, julienne and waffle cuts.

Cooking Methods: Cooking the fries was a super easy process. All of the varieties I tested could be baked in the oven. I found only the classic varieties included directions for deep frying. While the directions did not suggest cooking the fries on an elevated baking rack, I decided to give it a try on the classic waffle and rosemary garlic wedges. This added step seemed to encourage an even crisper texture. Also, I didn’t have to toss the potatoes during the baking process. If you don’t have an elevated rack, baking them in a single layer on a sheet pan worked out great as well.

Crispness: I only baked the fries I tested. All of the fries came out crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. The rosemary garlic wedges filled my kitchen with a wonderful herby aroma while they were baking. I’m seriously considering purchasing a small deep fryer in the name of “research.” Even though all I really want is another kitchen gadget. Does anyone have any suggestions?

My Favorites: The spicy sweet potato fries were my most favorite. They had a nice kick of chipotle spice. The rosemary garlic wedges were a very close second because I love cooking with herbs and they felt like something I would make from scratch on my own.

Disclosure: In accordance of FTC guidelines, Alexia Foods is providing a financial endorsement during the “Reinvent a Classic” promotion. The views and opinions discussed in this post are that of the author.

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