It’s weird because chips have never been at the top of my snacking list. I can bypass the chip isle at the grocery without batting an eyelash. When there’s an open bag of chips (which there often is) at work, I have no problem saying no. I’ll even occasionally reach for a crudités instead of a chip when it comes to dipping. Thankfully, it’s just never been my thing. BUT! Give me a fancy chip, and I’ll cave in a heartbeat.
These baked potato chips literally take me back to that meal at Scarpetta. And while I can totally see myself sipping a dirty martini in their fancy bar area while popping these in my mouth, one after the other, I can also just as easily see myself at home, in front of the TV, drinking a beer and snacking on theme while watching football. They’re fancy enough for the fanciest of restaurants, but let’s be honest, they’re still just an unassuming potato chip, so there’s no need for red lipstick and high heels when reaching for one.
Now, of course, the key to all potato chips is the crunch, so I tried out two different cooking methods in order to achieve that perfect crunchy exterior, and here’s what I found out:
1. Soak the cut potatoes in water to get rid of any excess starch
2. Thoroughly dry the potatoes after soaking – a dry potato will yield a crispy chip!
3. Evenly spread potatoes out on a cookie cooling rack set on top of a baking sheet. This will allow the air to fully circulate the chips, making sure crispiness is 360 degrees around.
I found that some chips crisp up faster than others, so you really have to keep an eye on them, especially if you cut them paper thin as I did. Each time I saw a few chips getting brown, I’d take them out and put the pan back in while the others crisped up.
Of course at this point, you can eat them as is, but I was trying to replicate the chips at Scarpetta, so while the chips were doing their thing in the oven, I softened five or six minced garlic cloves in a little bit of olive oil, then threw in a handful of thyme and sprinkled the mixture over the chips after they were done cooling off. A last touch was a dusting of grated Parmesan cheese.
- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds large baking potatoes, scrubbed
- 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large garlic clove, peeled
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350°. Slice potatoes lengthwise very thin (about 1/16 inch).
Brush 2 baking sheets with 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil each. Rub garlic over surface, pressing hard to extract as much garlic juice as possible. Place baking sheets in oven to warm for 5 minutes.
Place potato slices side by side on hot baking sheets. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and Parmesan cheese. Bake 7 to 10 minutes, rotate pans (for even browning), and bake another 10 to 15 minutes.
Flip potatoes and bake 5 minutes longer or until golden. Remove and cool on paper towels. Repeat with remaining potato slices. Eat warm or store in airtight container. Sprinkle it with more Parmesan cheese.