Friday, June 10, 2011

Juli Peeler: a great little gadget and a woman I'd like to know

I spent the better part of this past week in my home town of Sidney, B.C. catching up with my family and escaping the hustle and bustle of the lower mainland for a few days. One day, while poking around in one of the many cute little shops that Sidney has to offer, I came upon a Juli Peeler. The package of this little gadget boldly claimed to be able to cut vegetables into colorful little strips in seconds as well as julienne potatoes, lemon zest and pretty much anything else I wanted to. Since it is small and sleek looking and wouldn't require much in the way of annoying dish washing, which I have a constant pile of, I decided to give it a chance. 

Here is a recipe from my long time crush (yes, my husband is aware and seemingly okay with it) Jamie Oliver.  Go ahead and judge me if you want but I still say there's not much to dislike about the guy. Anyway, the moment I saw these labour intensive looking potatoes I knew it would be the perfect challenge for my little gadget.

All in all, these little potato straws were fairly easy to make. They ended up tasting bloody fantastic and we gobbled the whole plate up practically licking up the crumbs leftover on the plate vowing to make them again soon. 

We paired ours with a cold beer and a bunless beef burger topped with creamy blue cheese. A decadent meal for a quiet night in.

Jamie's tips for deep-frying

1. never leave the pan alone as it could catch fire
2. never leave kids alone in the room with a hot pan.

Rosemary Straw Potatoes with Lemon Salt
from Jamie Oliver

Since I have never done this type of frying before I followed the recipe fairly exactly, and so I will print the recipe verbatim.

for the lemon salt
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 4 tablespoons sea salt
for the rosemary straw potatoes

  • sunflower oil
  • 800g potatoes peeled into fine matchsticks
  • a few sprigs of rosemary, leaves picked

To make your lemon salt, bash and mix together the lemon zest with the salt in a pestle and mortar until salt is fine. 

Heat 6-8cm of sunflower oil in a sturdy pan and bring to deep-frying temperature. You can do this by using a thermometer, or by placing a small chunk of potato into the cold oil before you begin to heat it. When the potato is floating and a dark golden brown, the temperature will have reached 180 degrees C/350 degrees F and you're ready to begin frying (remember to remove the piece of potato before you begin).

Pat the julienne strips dry with some kitchen paper to remove any excess starch. Make sure you've got a slotted spoon and some paper napkins nearby. Carefully place some of your potatoes into the pan of oil (don't overcrowd) for a couple of minutes until golden brown and crisp. Cook the potatoes like this, in batches until they are all used up. Add the rosemary for the last 30 seconds. Remove the chips and rosemary to the napkins to soak up any excess oil, and then dust with lemon salt.

Here is my new Juli Peeler

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