Because chips happen.
My name is Virginia and I am addicted to chips. I remember once in 2nd or 3rd grade we ran out of chips when packing my lunch, so my mom and I stopped at the gas station on the way to school that morning and she ran in and got the “Lay’s blue ones.” Well, apparently that day coincided with packaging changes over at Lay’s. They had decided to change Sour Cream and Onion chips from blue packaging to green. And guess what flavor was now packaged in blue bags? Salt and Vinegar, which I find disgusting. I remember when I found out we made this devastating mistake around 11:30 AM that morning, and I sobbed uncontrollably in the Finely Road Elementary School cafeteria. I got over this heartbreak, but not my love for Sour Cream and Onion chips.
Fast forward to adulthood, where I was introduced to homemade chips with ranch dressing at your classic bar or Americanized Irish Pub. I loved these so much that I bought a mandoline and figured out how to make chips at home (which is VERY DANGEROUS by the way). Add a little quarantine boredom into the mix, and I perfected my Sour Cream and Onion chip recipe.
The most important part of this recipe is you just HAVE to have a mandoline. It is so important that the chips are cut evenly and thin, and the only way to really do this consistently is with a mandoline. This is the one I have had for several years and it is super cheap and I use it every single day at home for cutting various veggies. On this particulate mandoline, I slice on the thin (“1”) setting, which cuts at a thickness of about 1/16 of an inch (a little thicker than paper thin–like sticking 2-3 pieces of paper together).
Another important piece of the recipe is that you have to remember to pat your potato slices dry with a paper towel. The drier the potatoes are when they go into the oil, the less oil spatter for you and the more crispy the chips can get.
Make sure you use an oil with a high burning temperature. I always use avocado oil for this reason. Don’t crowd the pan when you put the slices in the hot oil. I typically do 10-15 slices in the pan at a time, but it will depend on how big your pan is and how big your slices are. You won’t ruin the chips or anything if you crowd the pan, but you will increase your cooking time and likely not all the chips will cook evenly.
Flipping the slices half way through is important so both sides are cooked evenly. I use these strainers to flip them. Once you take them out of the oil, you have to season them right away. I typically line a plate with a paper towel to absorb the extra oil, season them, and then pull all four corners of the paper towel together to create a little sack and shake it a few times to make sure all chips have been evenly coated. Repeat until all chips are done and you can enjoy (or eat as you go, which is what I do).
What you need:
- Metal Strainer
- A wide, high temperature resistant pot. I use this dutch oven (I know, it’s a splurge).
- Two medium sized russet potatoes, washed
- 1 cup of avocado oil (Don’t worry, you have left over oil to save for a future batch, but you need enough oil to cover the bottom of our pan and be after ½” to 1” deep.)
- 3 TBSP of finely chopped chives
- ½ TBSP of table salt (fine, not coarse)
- 1 TBSP of onion powder
- Mixed salt and onion powder together and set aside.
- Pour avocado oil in a deep pot and put the stove on medium heat.
- Slice potatoes using mandoline no thicker than ⅛” (I typically do closer to 1/16”).
- Line potato slices in one single layer on a paper towel and pat dry with another paper towel.
- Test the oil to make sure it is hot enough by wetting your finger with water and letting a drop of water hit the oil. If you hear a sizzle, the oil is hot enough.
- Add potato slices to hot oil in batches. Typically, I can fit 10-15 potato slices in the pot at a time.
- Watch the potatoes and flip once they begin to slightly turn golden. This happens anywhere from 60 seconds to 90 seconds. 75 seconds is typically what I end up hitting before I need to flip.
- Once you flip, set your timer for 30 seconds and check back to ensure your chips are not getting too dark and are still white to golden in color. They may be done by now, but if not, check back in 15 second increments. I typically cook mine for 75 seconds on the first side and 45 seconds to 60 seconds on the second side. Again, so much of this has to do with how thick the potatoes are, how hot the oil is, how crowded the pan is, ETC.
- Using your strainer, remove the chips from the hot oil and onto a paper towel lined plate. Immediately sprinkle liberally with the onion powder and salt mixture as well as adding a pinch or two of the chopped chives.
- Gather all four corners of the paper together lightly shake so the chips move around and get evenly coated with seasoning.
- Remove to bowl or other plate for serving
- Repeat steps 6-12 until all chips are done.
- Garnish with any extra chives.
- For leftovers, store in an airtight container on the counter or in the pantry. Reheat in the toaster oven for a few minutes or in the oven at a low (200-300) temperature. Be careful to only get them warm through, or they will continue to cook and you can burn them easily.
- By the end of the recipe, you will have about ¼ to ½ of a cup of avocado oil left in the pan. I store in a small mason jar in the pantry and reuse it next time I make these. Avocado oil is expensive, y’all!
- Liberally season your chips in the first batch. Taste test as you go and adjust to your liking.
- While these are technically Whole30 compliant from an ingredient perspective, they are not recommended for people on the Whole30 because they encourage eating with no brakes, so avoid these if you are doing a Whole30.
- This recipe yields four servings.
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