I never planned to buy anything to take home from Baguio City because I was just there a week ago and brought home a few food items for the family to share and enjoy. However, while my mom was busy haggling with a vendor over some fruits, I took the liberty of roaming around and spotted some purple potatoes at a stall selling some organic fruits and vegetables. I didn't buy it instantly, so when I went back to the hotel and searched about purple potatoes on the Internet, seeing some images of deep purple potatoes amused me a bit. The next day we went back to the market to buy it, but it was already gone and the vendor asked me to try my luck at their stall along the Session Road Market (happening every Panagbenga season when they close the entire Session Road to make way for different goods by different parts of the country). I was lucky to find two packs, and for 20 pesos (about 0.50usd) each pack, I bought both.
I knew then I wanted to turn it into potato chips as cutting it in cubes or dice might make it look like ube (purple yam). I was excited to make some homemade potato chips, but then...
... I was surprised it didn't look purple inside, although some potatoes have itty bitty purple spots. Still, I continued with the initial plan of cooking potato chips.
Homemade Potato Chips
- Potatoes, thinly sliced
- Oil for deep frying
- Salt and Pepper (to taste; optional)
- or your choice of seasoning
- Heat oil until it starts to bubble, without letting it smoke.
- Drop sliced potatoes one by one and stir occasionally to prevent the pieces from sticking to each other.
- When it turns light brown, take out the potatoes using a slotted spoon and lay it for a while on a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.
- Place the cooked potatoes in a container (with lid), sprinkle with your choice of seasoning and serve.
Well, this might be something all of us can make, but I did learn a few things -
> One cannot rush the cooking process as high heat might easily turn the potatoes dark brown and might result in bitter taste.
> It is highly recommended to use the mandolin (or vegetable peeler if you don't have one) to cut the potatoes to ensure even thickness. Cooking potatoes in different thickness will result to uneven cooking time.
> One doesn't need a gallon of oil to deep fry the potatoes, I used a very small saucepan with oil 2-inch deep and I was able to produce good potato chips. The secret lies in the way you cook it, not with the amount of oil.
> The purple potatoes have better taste compared to the regular brown ones, that I didn't actually need to add salt (it tasted good as is), but I still added a little as I was sharing this with my family.
> These purple potatoes didn't need water to prevent it from oxidizing... it didn't turn brown even if I just placed them on a plate prior to frying.
I served this with French Onion Dip, but I also learned that salad dressings - Caesar, Thousand Island, and even Aoili make a good dip. Of course, eating it as is works, too! :)
I still have a few small potatoes in the fridge, but I won't turn them into potato chips anymore (gotta watch the diet). So.. do I prefer homemade over bagged potato chips? Somehow, yes... but cooking takes time and bagged potato chips are readily available, so it's a no as well.