How much french fries?

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Joined Sep 5, 2008
Cooking for a crowd of 11 rugbymen who like to eat. Grilled rib steaks, lettuce salad and french fries.

I'm not sure how many lbs of potatoes I should go for?

Thanks!
 
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Joined Mar 1, 2017
I agree.....2 Russets per person should do the trick.

If you are working on a home setup, you can save a bunch of time by rinsing and blanching the fries the day before and chilling them in the fridge over night. The next day, simply drop them in the hot oil or oven straight from the fridge and go until they are golden brown. The cook time will be shortened because the potatoes will already be partially cooked. The cold temp should help them get a good golden color.

However, if you are menu is flexible, a great alternative to dealing with all the work that goes into making this many fries would be to simply buy about 10lbs of small, young white potatoes or small reds, boil them skins on in salty water (1 cup salt for every 6 cups of water) and serve with tons of melted butter. If you have a pot large enough, you can boil enough for the whole party in one shot with a lot less mess and hassle. Salt potatoes are insanely tasty and the only way to screw them up is not cook them enough or use too little salt. :)

Good luck.
 
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Are you from Central NY? Salt potatoes are big up there. Started by the workers digging the Erie Canal.
 
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I guess I'm the only one here that might assume you would use something like the pre-blanched frozen steak fries that you can get at the grocer. If I was cooking for a large group I would definitely go with a packaged product like that so I could focus on the other items. If that is the case, I'd personally take out what I would consider a decent portion.. if steak fries for instance probably somewhere around 15 to 20 fries and weigh them (assuming you have a little kitchen scale). Then just multiply that times 11 to get the rough weight you'll need to purchase.

I recently tried the Walmart brand (Great Value) steak fries. I know a lot of people will turn their nose up at anything from Walmart but they were the best product I've had. I think the difference was I cooked them on a sheet pan with a baking rack to lift them off the pan. Don't crowd them. They were golden, puffy, crisp. Honestly they are the closest baked fries I've ever had to deep fried. I could not tell the difference.

fries.jpg
 
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Are you from Central NY? Salt potatoes are big up there. Started by the workers digging the Erie Canal.
Yes, I grew up in Central New York. Salt potatoes are a huge thing there. Granted, they don't sound like much to someone who is not familiar with them, but, they are tasty as hell. The only way they get too salty is if they sit in the salt water for too long after cooking and by "too long" I mean a half a day or so.
 
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What are salt potatoes? I've done salt encrusted potatoes a couple times. With those, you boil little red potatoes in salted water until all of the water has evaporated. The salt forms a crust on the potatoes. I've not yet nailed the ratio of salt/water/potato yet but they are really good.
 
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Salt potatoes are a close kin to what you've described except small, young white potatoes are typically used (small reds will also work) and they are boiled soft in briny water. The salt tends to give the thin skins a little more firmness and while the salt doesn't form a crust, it does soak in to the skin and the outer layers of the potato. If the potatoes are left to soak in the salt water, they can become quite inedible. So, there is a "sweet spot" in terms of how long they should spend in the water once cooked.
 
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Well in that case the potatoes are not Russet, and come from a friend who grows them, they are of varied size, I just have to tell him how many lbs I need....

Hmm I hadn't thought of par-frying but maybe I'll have to... I'll see how the evening unfolds...

So I figure, about 1 lb potatoes per person to be on the safe side?
 
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That's what I would plan for a group like that. The "standard large portion size" may actually be half that... but I know when a bunch of guys/gals get together that sometimes just isn't sufficient.

A couple of my favorite hamburger joints serves 24+ ounce servings of fries... which is just a ridiculous amount that nobody seems to be able to finish. I can easily eat half that and beyond is just shoveling food down my gullet in either a fit of gluttony or a fit of guilt over wasting a good potato.

But I'd plan for a large serving size and also plan for what to do with leftover potatoes... which I'm sure is no problem for you to do! Hope your event goes well and is enjoyable.
 
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2,485
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Joined Jan 8, 2010
I would go for at least half a kg per person.
They will be freshly cooked chips and people tend to eat a lot more when they are good!
Also, they are rugby players.......

And yes, par fry or par boil (I prefer par frying) for ease and speed
 
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Oh boy my friend gave me like 20kg potatoes. I think that should be enough.

Ok so the party is 1km from my home... I wonder if I should do any prepping beforehand... peeling... cutting... I'm worried about oxidation though. Or should I keep them in a water bath?

We'll have two fryers... no idea how big they are.

This should be a fun evening.
 
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If you blanch in oil at home, there will be no oxidation.
If you just want to peel and cut the potatoes, then keep them in water. I prefer to keep them in salted water. They crisp up better that way. Just make sure to dry before frying and, if you use salted water, adjust salt in the end product
 
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Great thank you Butzy! I'm not blanching at home, I don't have the equipment or oil here... so I'll cut and put in salt water and carry to the location.
 
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You may wish to prep ahead of time (peel and cut at the very least) and have some help with the rest of the food. Fries for 11 people can very easily monopolize your time due to the large amount of prep involved.

Good luck. :)
 
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Joined Dec 18, 2010
... and the duration of cooking. Everybody wants their fries hot so periodic cooking throughout the dining period may be necessary.
 
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I ended up peeling the potatoes at home, using a fry cutter on location, blanching 5mn in 3 batches, then frying to golden brown at the last minute in 3 batches... success... but I didn't make enough (not sure how many kg I made but about 3 medium/large potatoes per person).
 

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