It’s possible, even likely, that you’ve never eaten a good straw potato.
Almost no one does it at home. What people eat, in 99% of cases, is an inferior industrial product. That little potato that the uncle from the snack trailer spoons into the dogão in the early hours of the morning.
It also applies to restaurants: the straw potatoes in commercial lunch stroganoff, you can bet, go straight from the bag to the customer’s plate.
There is a reason why almost no one fry straw potatoes: it is a process of work and frustration. It is not easy to equate oil temperature and frying time. One hesitation, and those very fine pieces of potato become charcoal.
Things multiply when you need to make several batches. It is almost impossible to remove all the potato pieces from the oil. The old potato burns and gets incorporated into the new potato, ruining everything.
This problem can be solved with one of the wonders of our time: the air fryer. With it, you gain control over time and temperature, use very little oil (you can splurge and make it with olive oil, which is healthier) and obtain excellent results.
The stroganoff is a thousand times better with this accompaniment, you can write.
In addition to the air fryer, you will need two common pieces of equipment. To grate the potatoes, you can use the larger holes on a regular grater. I prefer to do this with a vegetable peeler with a serrated blade, something you can buy at the market or in kitchen supply stores — it produces long strands, with a better look and texture.
The other utensil is a silicone baking tray suitable for air frying, to prevent the potato straws from falling under the basket. If you don’t have one, line the basket with aluminum foil.
One annoying thing that you can’t avoid is the work of grating the potatoes. As someone who has tested the recipe a few times, I say that practice leads to efficiency. The tenth potato is much easier than the first.
This is a recipe that takes some time – almost two hours between grating and roasting the potato – but little manual work after grating. However, most air fryer models are small. I don’t recommend multiplying the recipe into many servings.
Now, if you have time to spare at home, you can repeat the recipe two or three times and save it for later. Once cold, the straw potatoes keep for several days, in a covered pot, at room temperature.
STRAW POTATOES IN THE AIR FRYER
Performance: 2 servings (side dish)
1 large potato (or 2 medium ones)
½ teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon olive oil or oil
Way of doing
1. Grate the potato, skin and all. Wash it repeatedly in a sieve, under running water, to remove part of the starch (which makes the pieces stick together). Drain very well.
2. Heat the air fryer for 5 minutes at 100 ºC. In a silicone baking dish (or lined basket), distribute the potato. Add salt and oil. Mix well.
3. Bake for 1 hour at 100º. Stir the potato every 15 minutes to dry it evenly.
4. Raise the temperature to 160 ºC and bake for 20 minutes to half an hour (the time will depend on the device), until evenly browned. Stir every 3 minutes to even out the consistency.
5. Drain on absorbent paper. Eat immediately or allow to cool before storing in a covered container.
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