Saturday, 3 October 2009

Recipe Video: Butternut Squash Chips/Fries

This is a nice way to get that potato-like taste (but sweeter) with a Paleo/Primal-friendly vegetable and with a similar shape and texture to normal chips/fries. If you manage to get yours to be crispy, let me know how you did it. Personally I prefer them soggy anyway, but I know most people like them crispy.

Okay, I admit this barely counts as a recipe. I am guessing that by definition there needs to be more than one ingredient for it to be a recipe. It's more of an idea.

For those in the US, chips is what we call fries in the UK.

17 comments:

lowlight said...

I think the reason it's soggy is probably because you're using EVOO. Properly crispy fried food should be cooked with a saturated fat. Next time try lard, which is of course very paleo (just be sure to get non-hydrogenated, which may prove to be difficult) or coconut oil, or even peanut oil.

Methuselah said...

Thanks lowlight... I will try that next time and if it works, modify the video accordingly by deftly replacing the oil side with an updated one!

brainpower said...

Lard is what the fast-food chains used to fry their potatoes in before the CSPI came up with their ridiculous Anti-SatFat campaign and forced the to change to vegetable oils.

Anonymous said...

Try coating the fries in egg white.

Aaron Blaisdell said...

You do have two ingredients: butternut squash and oil. I don't think, however, that a recipe by definition requires more than one ingredient. I believe it requires some type of processing of the ingredients(s).

I'm making my sweet potato fries (chips) today to bring to a BBQ lunch at a friend's house. I use bacon fat or beef tallow (or coconut oil if I'm out of those) and while they are not very crisp, nor are they soggy. Try adding some spices (nutmeg, cumin, a dash of salt, pepper, whateveryoulike) next time and keep mixing it up for endless varieties of fun!

Methuselah said...

Anon - good idea. I will try that.

Aaron - you are right - the dictionary says 'a set of instructions for making or preparing something.'

Sounds like you are a season maker of this sort of thing - I'll try coconut oil to start because we have it in the house, but I like the idea of using animal fat. Will try some herbs and spices too. Thanks for the advice.

Methuselah said...

brainpower - yes, the irony of that is excruciating.

Kat said...

I literally just read about this recipe in a book I was reading just last night "The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth" by Jonny Bowden. How funny I wake up and see it on your site. Yum, looks good, esp. for the kiddies. Thanks!

Methuselah said...

Thanks Kat.

All - I have a recipe update: my Mum provided this additional advice:

I use it with olive oil when I roast cubes of b'nut squash in the oven: coriander, cumin, fennel seeds, tumeric in whatever proportions you like. I make up a lot and store it in a jar. I mix the spice in with the olive oil and toss the squash in it before roasting.

Based on the other comments, perhaps the ideal solution is the spices (Aaron's comment has some ideas on that front too) plus cocunut oil. In cooler climates it would be necessary to warm some coconut oil to a liquid first to make the spice mixing and basting possible.

goodfriendsam said...

nice idea, i've got 15 pounds of winter squash on my counter, perfect.

btw, dig the music + video presentation style.

Methuselah said...

goodfriendsam - thanks - hope you enjoy the fries. Try coconut oil instead of olive oil - consensus seems to be they will be crispier.

Furniture said...

I like the idea of butternut chips!!! I always try to use butternut (it is very low on calories) to make something else than mash and it always goes terribly, terribly wrong!!! My last attempt was butternut croquettes with cheese in the middle and not only took me ages but I had to put way too much flour to give some consistency for them to take shape and afterwards I made the terrible decision of frying them (I was already using the oven for chicken and mushroom pie).The result? Me and my boyfriend having bad guts for two days and him panicking each time I tell him “I am going to make something new” This looks simple though so I will give it a try. Thanks you for the idea and I would venture to call it a recipe and a really good idea!!!!!!

Methuselah said...

Furniture - hope it works for you. I tend to avoid getting too complicated with recipes because I invariably get in a mess like you describe; and in any case when I have been eating Paleo for long enough everything tastes nice even when cooked simply.

Athena said...

I bought a Butternut specifically to make this recipe after seeing your great video. I never thought of fixing them this way! Hope you don't mind if I comment on your technique, not to criticize.

My opinion is that you will never get crispy fries cooking them this way, regardless of the type of oil (tho I think animal fat is best). The reason is that, to get crispy, the fries need to cook in the hot oil on all sides at once...they need to be covered in hot oil, as in a deep fat fryer. What's happening for you is that the part of the fry contacting the hot pan is being seared crispy while the rest of the fry is getting steam cooked and soft. Then when you flip the fry over the seared side starts to get soft because it starts to steam too. See?

The only way to get them crispy in the oven is to flip very very often and use more oil, and cut them into narrow slivers so that they cook more quickly. But who wants to slave in front of a hot oven or grease vat, right?! Much better to love them soft!

Methuselah said...

Athena - no doubt you are right... but soggy is good for me. However, out of curiosity I intend to try all the suggestions at some point, including regular flipping!

Velcromom said...

Here is the technique I use for making crispy roasted potatoes - I bet it would work for the squash too. It results in a crispy outer coating even with EVOO.

Cut the pieces 1/2" thick and parboil til the outside begins to soften but the inside is still firm. Then drain and toss roughly in a bowl with EVOO and salt, til the outside of the slices are coated with a layer of what looks like mashed potato. Arrange on the baking sheet and baste with any remaining oil from the bowl. Roast at 450F 20 min or til brown on the bottom then flip and cook about ten more minutes.

Methuselah said...

Velcromom - thanks for the tip - we'll give it a try!

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