Published January 1, 2004.
The savings in calories and fat are no reason to eat an oven fry--it has to taste good. With its leathery crust and mealy interior, the typical oven fry needs work.
Low fat is never a good excuse for lousy food, and oven fries should be no exception. Abysmal flavor and texture just aren't worth the savings in calories, especially when these "lite" fries taste like overroasted potatoes with thick, leathery crusts and hollow interiors. In other cases, they are limp, whitish, mealy, and bland--a complete failure in all respects.
Easy and clean oven cooking--as opposed to deep-frying in a pot of hot, splattering oil--is such an engaging proposition that we decided to try to make an oven fry worth eating on its own terms. If it didn't have a golden, crisp crust and a richly creamy interior, we were going back to the deep fryer.
Start with peeled russet potatoes, cut into wedges and soaked in hot water for 10 minutes. Pour oil, salt, and pepper on the baking sheet instead of on the potatoes, which helps keep the potatoes from sticking. Cover the potatoes with foil to steam them for the first five minutes of cooking, then uncover and continue baking until golden and crisp.list of recipes