McDonald’s is serious about their fries. When they were forced by shifting public opinion (drunkenly swaggering around as it always does) to switch from their beef tallow and cottonseed oil mixture to a vegetable oil mixture; they spent millions to find a solution that retained the taste. How they make the fries is not the worlds most closely guarded secret, but they do have a unique flavor, texture, and appearance which is a product of lots of large scale industrial processes. [J. Kenji López-Alt] decided to reverse engineer the process.
His first problem was of procurement. He could easily buy cooked fries, but he needed the frozen fries from McDonald’s to begin his reverse engineering. McDonald’s refused to sell him uncooked fries, “They just don’t do that,” one employee informed him. He reached out to his audience, and one of them had access to a charlatan. The mountebank made quick work of the McDonald’s employees and soon [J. Kenji] had a few bags of the frozen potato slivers to work with.
What follows next was both entertaining and informative. At one point he actually brought out a Starrett dial caliper to measure the fries; they were 0.25in squares in cross section. Lots of research and experimentation was done to get that texture. For example, McDonald’s fries aren’t just frozen raw potatoes. They are, in fact; blanched, flash fried, frozen and then fried again. Getting this process right was a challenge, but he arrived at similar fries by employing his sous vide cooker.
He then wanted to see if he could come up with a french fry recipe that not only allowed the home chef to make their own McDonald’s fries, but improve on them as well. It gets into some food chemistry here. For example he found that the same effect as blanching could be produced by boiling the fries; if you added vinegar to keep the cell walls from disintegrating.
The article certainly shows how knowledge of the chemistry behind cooking can improve the results.
88 thoughts on “Reverse Engineering The McDonald’s French Fry”
But one question remains: WHY?
McD fries get stale fast, are either too salty or not really salty and even when done right they are not that good.
Because he could?
Because why fucking not? Because he wanted to know? Same reason I spent a while trying to replicate the arms on the Nixie drone… because it looks cool.
This is getting really scary. It’s the third time I see an article here after I’ve found it alone a few days before.. All the the articles were old, so I don’t see why had would publish them just now.
It’s HaD using tracking cookies to seek for content based on its users browsing habbits?
Could it be that you and the Hackaday have broadly the same interests? Nah, it’s got to be the Illuminati at work…
You belong on reddit with a tinfoil hat.
You my friend are completely clueless, you belong in kindergarten.
Correlating Hackaday visitors with aggregated information from other websites is nothing out of ordinary. Several companies provide that service and I wouldn’t blame Hackaday from using that information to seek content to please its visitors.
“Hackaday does evil shit with the metrics and views, ad trackers and cookies, monetizing their own viewership! I’ll repeat this until it becomes true!” – You
Why that’s an interesting accusation. Do you, perchance, have any proof of this, or evidence supporting your claim? – Me
“Hackaday does evil shit with the metrics and views, ad trackers and cookies, monetizing their own viewership! I’ll repeat this until it becomes true!” – You
Edit, because I can edit:
MrX fails to mention this is a WordPress cookie. This is enabled in the default WordPress install. Hackaday runs on WordPress. Everyone, everyone here wishes we had the time and money to make something better. Does this mean we use the Quantcast data? Do you see any evidence of that? No. Is it possible to prove Hackaday makes editorial decisions based on the viewing habits of it’s readers? No, in fact, it isn’t. I can’t provide proof of something we don’t do. Right off the bat, MrX comes off as a cynical asshole, throwing around baseless accusations, without any proof. An accusation without evidence can be disregarded out of hand.
Now, MrX’s accusation relies on the fact that Hackaday runs (poorly) on WordPress. What would it be like if we didn’t run on WordPress? It just so happens we have a platform that doesn’t run on wordpress: hackaday.io. What do the cookies look like on that? Nothing, really. It’s only stuff we use for the database.
Therefore, we can conclude that if Hackaday has complete control over your browser, we don’t do much of anything.
I’d like to expand on this simple fact, per Noirwhal’s suggestion, “Wouldn’t it be more effective to just flatly refute that allegation if it is false, and communicate HaDs actual philosophy and practice on this”, Hackaday does not sell your browsing data to advertisers. Hackaday does not make editorial decisions based on your browsing habits. Hackaday, by any measure, does not do what the rest of the industry does. Hackaday does not censor anything – including baseless accusations of evil stuff we do.
But enough about us. Lets look at what other sites do to your browser.
Wired.com 11kB of local storage (that’s a lot). what’s in that? Adsync, “Certain visitors to Adsync Technologies’ websites choose to interact with Adsync Technologies in ways that require Adsync Technologies to gather personally-identifying information” In total, over 30 cookies, dedicated to collecting user information.
Makezine, because they run on WordPress. There’s that tricky ___qca cookie again, and a bunch of cookies for user tracking.
Arstechnica 41 cookies, tracking the time spent, ads viewed, posts seen, and a bunch of other shit.
Reddit CEO: “We know your dark secrets. We know everything.”
From this, you can see Hackaday stands in stark contrast to literally every other site you may visit. You can see everything else here.
I’m growing very, very tired of baseless accusations that Hackaday or myself 1) are paid off by either Rigol, McDonald’s, Raspberry Pi or any other company. We’re not. 2) Are somehow doing evil stuff. We’re not. 3) Are selling user data. We’re not. 3a) Are using user data for editorial decisions. Man, that’s actually a good idea, but we’re morally opposed to it. 4) We censor stuff. Judging by this thread, I wish we did.
So, MrX, I have a few things to say to you. First, good job finding the ___qca cookie. I’ll bring that up with the server herders and see if we can disable that. Second, You’re a paranoid idiot, who makes baseless accusations without any evidence. Third, your original argument that Hackaday, “Correlating Hackaday visitors with aggregated information from other websites is nothing out of ordinary.” is completely false, and your evidence that Hackaday serves up a cookie does not support your conclusion. Your ‘evidence’ does not support your conclusion. Yes, that bears repeating. In fact, no data can support your conclusion, because your conclusion is false.
Noirwhal, since I’m also replying to you in this edit: you way MrX, “is right”. I remind you MrX’s claim is that we use user data to make editorial decision. This claim is false, therefore no evidence MrX presents can be taken as evidence of this claim. Therefore, MrX is not right. MrX does not present an argument, because he does not present any evidence. MrX simply said something false, and just because he continues to repeat it does not mean his argument gets stronger. My god, you’re probably eligible to vote, and you’re taken in by this.
This is basic critical thinking here. MrX has not provided evidence to his argument, so his argument can be rejected out of hand. Additionally, MrX’s argument is directly opposed to any policy of Hackaday or it’s editors. The fact that we allow you to post such accusations in a public forum should be enough evidence of that.
I was not particularly concerned if HaD was tracking cookies or not. I own a couple of websites and I do make use of the aggregated data some companies provide, I would expect HaD to do the same.
Anyway, it is your moronic reply that made me investigate further. You asked for proof, so here it is..
Fact: Hackaday stores the __qca cookie. Just go to the cookie manager in your browser and inspect what hackaday is storing. According to  the _qca cookie may use your “computer’s IP address, pixel code, referring HTTP location, current HTTP location, search string, time of the access, browser’s time, any searches made on the applicable website, and other statistics” in order to “analyze Log Data from different websites and combine it with other non Personally Identifiable Information to produce the Reports that are made available on the Quantcast.com Site, to enable web publishers and advertisers to deliver audience segments that are appropriate for their products or services.”
About Quantcast :
Quantcast relies primarily on tracking pixels that publishers install on the pages of their sites to measure audience data, which is then used to compile visitor profiles and build a detailed picture of web audiences.
Quantcast also correlates and compares information across websites and platforms to reveal usage patterns and relationships among websites
So Brian, please do us a favor and do not treat your audience as stupid.
Brian – but he is right.
Sure you are right, in a way, but he IS RIGHT.
Web publishers often use the tools available to him. Analysis of users cookies is widely done. Duh dude.. Duh.
But you know that.
Wouldn’t it be more effective to just flatly refute that allegation if it is false, and communicate HaDs actual philosophy and practice on this, because you are either totally naive about the publishing world you inhabit, or refuse to admit facts, or are lying on purpose.. Which is it?
You are blowing things out of proportion here. I am not a paranoid freak, I do not block cookies and I’ve been a daily reader of HaD for many many years now. I wouldn’t block cookies on HaD even if you were collecting aggregated data because I simply don’t care and like you said, everybody else is doing it.
If you read my original comment again, maybe now you notice I was not accusing you of anything. The accusation is in your perception, not in my intentions. I did however make an association between cause and effect and shared it because I thought it was funny (yes this can be arguable). I did thereafter not enjoy your reply, quoting sentences I never wrote and that made me investigate..
I appreciate you let the comment about my findings go through, it is good to show us readers that you have decent transparency in your forum, that’s a big plus.
If I can be any help, there is a wordpress plugin for honoring the DNT browser setting:
In the future please watch out your tone and do not assume we are all idiots.
@Noirwhal: I completely agree. Replying that aggregated data is available but we don’t use it would be a so much better reply..
I don’t get what this has to do specifically with [Benchoff]. You asked a question and he made the effort to give you the best answer he could in a short time frame. Weather it’s right or wrong is not relevant because [Benchoff] doesn’t do the web site development around here – he an author / editor.
If you have an issue then take a look at their terms of service and privacy policies and if your still unhappy about it then raise the issue with someone who can do something about it.
There will be a contact us form there somewhere.
PS: I am just another public member here – I have nothing to do with HAD other than that.
Come on people. Just eat those cookies, they’re delicious.
I can’t believe this discussion went so far! But I really should know better by now.
I like my cookies deep fried in beef tallow and cottonseed oil.
This guy won’t quit. Get’s proven wrong but keeps on going. HaD tries to reason with false accusations with a thorough explanation, reasonably: it’s blowing things out of proportion and being rude.
Wow, people these days.
Ok Brian, but how about the allegations that you’re in league with the NWO, who *everyone* knows have aligned themselves with the Lizard People? We know you’re part of the plot using Presidential Elections to distract us from the government plan to install tracking chips (based on HAARP technology) to *truly* track our movements/interests. The Neo-fascists get complete control over the population and you can better appeal to your ever expanding target audience (sheeple). Checkmate.
Seriously though, the internet give these people the ability to be “loud” with their strange ideas. They can talk to other like minded people which reinforce and expands their ideas. It *might* be worth putting up a statement (perhaps in a FAQ) on HAD’s privacy/ethics/goals that you can just link to in the future: that way you only have to say it once.
You don’t know [Benchoff] do you ?
The tracking chips would be based of a 6502.
brian… he didnt say what you claim he said. you have done that specifically to me also. its auite alarming to another person when false words are put in their mouths.
i read his original post as being humorous obervation and a question mark. was added to show he was curious and it really wasnt confrontational.
you have edited your own response to make mine look irrational, but my response was not about anything except you calling people names for knowing the tip of the iceberg on tracking. your response came before his investigation of cookies, so the whole timeline of rsponses is bizarre here.
i found your further explanation of hackadays policies useful, refreshing, and a big improvement on your first statements, but it also was done by you to hide how snide, abusive and angry you sounded.
i am not a child. i have voted for al gore. think about that. here is what is scary, someone like you can vote based on. absuridities like the ahmed story, just because it allows you to further feel a insane sense of superiority.
mxr never said the things you claim he did.when YOU attacked him, he still didnt say those things. he said your response was moronic, which it was, and he also said he does not care, he was joking all of us regular readers have had this synchronistic feeling of hAd being following our own brosing habits.
what is wrong with you? i feel it is a serious shame the way you behave because i love hack a day and you are this strange element here who is always ready to attack readers on the flimsiest of false interpretations of their comments. you constantly crap talk your readers, and meanwhile you are a tabloid style hack. look in hte mirror bro.
again, the scary thing is YOU can vote, you undiscerning, combative, egomaniac.
I used to think it was cool that HaD doesn’t censor comments (and in particular I admire Brian’s sense of humor about the dumb shit thrown at him), but tiresome crud like this kinda makes me wish the crew would wield an iron banhammer.
but they do censor comments
Sometimes! I prefer the word moderate though. I’ve censored them for exceedingly unprofessional language, dirty pictures, sexisim, discrimination, and racism. Typically I’ll just remove the really offending parts (with a note) and leave the rest. Ya’ll can dig your own grave for the most part, but it would be nice if the discussion stayed civil and didn’t get anyone fired if they read them on their break as their boss walked by.
I’d like an option to select ‘Troll mode’ next to the ‘Report comment’ link. Enough clicks and the comment gets all uppercased and punctuation gets altered. For example:
‘THIS IS GETTING REALLY SCARY! IT’S THE THIRD TIME I SEE AN ARTICLE HERE AFTER I’VE FOUND IT ALONE A FEW DAYS BEFORE!’…
Muucchhh funnier, and most of us completely ignore all-caps anyway.
I like this.
I second this motion. All in favor say “aye”.
I might start making it a thing to alter really obvious trolling.
This will be fun. *trollgrin*
clearly brian is the actual troll in this case, but sycophants with sycho, ammirite?
So, a “like” button is uncool, but a “troll” button is good. What a cynical lot.
Lol. I want both, but both could be abused I suppose.
I’m all for a ‘like’ button. It would assume that it would cut down on s-posting and my lol/hahaha’s. ;)
Maybe a “not a hack” and a “here’s the Arduino?” button?
*Presses post comment button*
*Presses like button on his own post*
Well, the compensation is that comments on HaD, even the trollish ones (that are allowed through, anyway), are a ???????????????????????????????????? times better than those on sites like, say, Gizmodo. I was joking about the banhammer. Mostly, I think we have a great group of both writers and commenters on HaD, and a remarkable number of the comments are on-topic and useful. And when they’re not, it’s a hoot to see Brian et al tear them down. Some of the articles are definitely in the “slow news day?” category, but it’s obvious before the clickthrough and even those can be entertaining when I’ve run out of anything else to read. Please don’t change anything.
Even I know you enough that you were joking about the ‘banhammer’. A ????????????????????????????????????? Lol. :)
Okay, then, a googol times better.
vrian made up words mrx never said, attacked him using these false quotes, then went on some rant calling us children.
you appreciate that and consider it wit?
#1. Who is “vrian”.
#2. Nobody is calling it witty.
#3. Come-on you can do better than that.
Brian wins because >90% saw what he did, including stupid newbies like me. And it was funny.
If he had attacked somebody with actual quotes taken out of context on someone who uses their full name here, I might feel differently.
Do you read hacker news? Do your friends post stuff they read on hacker news on your social media? Cause I read hacker news and this was on hacker news:P I thought, “This is super neat and I bet Hackaday readers would like this. Also, I get paid to find cool stuff and write about them.” Now it is here.
If we have a quantcast or whatever telling us what we should write no one has told me about it. That would be awesome. I’d save so much time searching and shoveling through the tips line.
Here’s a thought. HAD raders are not all serious cooks. A HAD reader who is a serious cook found the article recently, and thought “would other HAD readers like this? After all cooking also involves hacks!” All have a good laugh, and some of use who are not so serious cooks try it out and are pleased with the results. End of story, no conspiracy to be seen here, please move along.
To which I would add. MrX the internet is not all about you.
PS to Gerritt: thanks for posting this. Firstly, I already knew about the Heston Blumenthal, but don’t have the right kit to do it, and secondly Serious Eats is a really fine site. So thank you.
You lost me at HABBITS
My brother and I both followed the recipe at that link. You freeze the results in batches, because you fry them one last time from frozen before eating them. Both of us had the same results in our households to trying them for the first time: “are there any more?”
Anyone out there: if you’re even somewhat interested in the technical side of fries, or you even slightly _enjoy_ fries, try it out and you won’t regret it.
You DO all cook, don’t you?
Does putting butter on bread count as “cooking”? Cos I don’t do that.
No. “Cooking” implies heating of foodstuff. So at least you have to put your butter-and-bread into a toaster. :-)
My son has severe autism, and one of the few foods he will eat is… McDonald’s fries. You have any idea how expensive that gets buying fries a couple times a week?
“He then wanted to see if he could come up with a french fry recipe that not only allowed the home chef to make their own McDonald’s fries, but improve on them as well.”
Hasn’t pretty much every recipe for fries ever already improved on McDonald’s french fries? The above sentence makes Belgian and Dutch people cry.
Im dutch and i like McDonalds fries (‘french fries’) just as much as normal (Dutch) ones, although i agree with Stefan_Z that they ‘go bad’ quite fast. Belgian ones i dont really like, those are just too thick, they get this weird flaky texture and bland taste as they cool off, within like 3-5 minutes, where as Dutch ones taste the same for the entire time your eating them. (its all down too the type of potato used, its apparently a real science, saw some docu recently about Chinese people coming here to learn how to make proper fries lol, even tho Belgians pmuch came up with them)
I’m always surprised at the elitism that gets expressed when people talk about “fast food” places. There’s a great quote right in this article: “I find it remarkable that the bigwigs have discovered a way to create a frozen fry that even a one armed eyeless chimp has trouble screwing up.” Although I think, like most people, he’s not appreciating that there are actual scientists and engineers working for McDonald’s (“bigwigs” diminishes the scientists who put an amazing amount of effort into this, in my mind).
Even if you don’t like it… most people do, and it’s not due to advertising, mindlessness, or anything else. It’s due to the research they did. I mean, yeah, you’re right they ‘go bad’ pretty fast, but the time from frying to serving on these guys is supposed to be very short, which is why you avoid like the plague the franchises that don’t have timers set on fries.
And, of course: one of the things that he *did* improve was… their longevity. Adding vinegar to the blanching water further strengthens the pectin. So the one complaint that people have made here… he fixed.
Also, if you think they’re too salty, there’s an answer to that, which also fixes the “bad franchise” problem – ask for them without salt, and add the salt yourself. As a bonus you get the fries fresh.
actually there are belgian fries that taste bad as well as any countries, but yet, we still have among the best fries in the world…
just go taste the ones at place Flagey in Brussles, or Billy in Mons, or at many other places… just unbeatable by a,y standard… it takes real know-how to make some decent fries and it has nothing to do with country, being dutch, belgian or french…
all you need is the right potato (bintje is not the best there, some other species are nicer), the right oil/fat and the right temperatures for both precook and cook… precook at 160, let temperature drop, remove fries when reaching back to 150… let it sit and cool for 15 minutes, then deep fry at 170, let it down, and remove when reached 160
once removed, you have to shake them high in a pierced bowl to let them dry a bit, and remember never to add salt to a pack of fries when taking them back as it condenses water vapor and renders them soft… they have to stay crisp
The improving is simple just do anything but what M does.
So to avoid making the same crap you need to know what not to do.
If he just wanted the answer, he could have followed Grant Imahara’s lead (video below) and then contacted the supplier if there were more questions. Of course this is a hack, so where’s the fun of just finding the answer directly, right?
FWIW, much of what goes on in food companies is just exactly what the author does – reverse engineering someone else’s recipe or manufacturing process.
Because this video, as much as it’s informative, is a McDonald’s sponsored shilling video.
And of course, it always useful to have access to a charlatan.
Hack #1: Social engineering to aquire frozen fries!
Fries, fries… we don’t need their stinkin’ fries! What we demand to know is how do they make their mayonaise? Full disclosure: Pulp Fiction was right, people in the Netherlands put mayonaise on their fries and not ketchup. And Mc Mayo is really delish.
I’m from England and I’ve always preferred mayonnaise to ketchup on fries as well. Although I’m not overly fond of strong tomato flavours on anything.
Ohh great. More pandering from the mayonnaise lobby.
In Utah, they prefer “fry sauce”, which is a 50:50 mix of mayonnaise and ketchup.
Isn’t that the basis of “thousand island” dressing?
My personal hot tip: mix the mayo with a dollop of sambal, the Indonesian ground pepper sauce.
In Connecticut, the local fry sauce is a 60:40 mixture of mustard and kerosene.
Hey [Wumbologist], that sounds about right!
But I love strong mustard. :)
Here’s the guy who’s ???????????????????????? in the pocket of Big Mayo.
As fries do not have way too much fat themselves. I don’t like them very much, but if I “have” to eat them They have to be literally drowned in ketchup.
Nice article, and I actually read the linked article for once! Now to see if I can do it even slightly similar baked and not fried – likely a fail of the week, I know but healthier and cheaper!
I was able to make some pretty good homemade baked fries by baking them at a high temp (450) and coating them with oil, something like this:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Chop potatoes into matchsticks by halving, halving once more, then cutting into wedges, then strips.
Line two baking sheets with foil and generously spray with nonstick spray.
Add fries plus a generous drizzle of oil and sea salt, pepper and garlic powder. Toss to coat.
Arrange fries a single layer making sure they aren’t touching too much. This will help them crisp up and cook evenly.
Bake for 25-35 minutes, tossing/flipping at least once to ensure even baking.
In the last 10 minutes of cooking, heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add 1-2 Tbsp olive oil and the minced garlic. Saute, stirring frequently, until just slightly brown to wake up the flavor.
Remove from heat and set aside.
When the fries are finished, remove from oven, sprinkle again with sea salt, and spoon the warm garlic on top. Toss to coat and serve immediately as is or with Whiskey BBQ Ketchup.
450° ? You want to carbonize them? My oven does only go up to about 250°C. Which was enough all the time up to now.
I thought he may have meant 450 degrees Fahrenheit which is 232 Celcius but even that is too high as cooking oils burn / smoke between 160 and 180 Celcius.
Nice. At least some people here know how to cook!
Or at least they try. :) I can’t stand fast-food.
I’d rather make homemade ‘garlicky roasted redskin potatoes’.
I never thought HaD would make me hungry, but [hmmmmgood] made my stomach growl. :)
Next the Chicken McNugget, first surprise, no chicken.
I hear they are made from Soylent Green.
You can buy the non-green version too. –
You know since that stuff says it tastes “neutral” they should come up with flavours, they’re make more money.
“Chokey chicken is people!”
I would not eat that shit (I mean McDonalds junk food) even if they paid me to. A good reverse engineering of their stuff would involve chemical analysis in order to reveal what is really in there.
Potatoes. They’re actually pretty open about what’s in them and what the ingredients do. http://www.mcdonalds.com/us/en/your_questions/our_food/what-are-the-ingredients-in-your-fries.html
“It should come as no surprise the primary ingredient for our World Famous Fries is a great tasting potato, including a variety of Shepody, Ranger Russet, Umatilla Russet and Russet Burbank. For their signature golden look, we add dextrose — a natural form of sugar that helps give the fries their perfect golden color. Sodium acid pyrophosphate is also added to keep the potatoes from turning gray after freezing and before they are cooked at the restaurant. This is a natural occurrence in potatoes, similar to how an apple might turn brown after being cut. In order to maintain texture, our suppliers partially fry our fries in an oil blend containing canola, soybean and hydrogenated soybean oil. Our suppliers add natural beef flavor, which includes hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk, to the par fry oil to contribute to that World Famous Fry taste. Citric acid is also added to preserve the freshness of the oil, as well as dimethylpolysiloxane to reduce foaming and oil splattering.
In our restaurants, we finish frying with an oil blend that contains canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil, as well as citric acid, dimethylpolysiloxane and TBHQ. TBHQ is an antioxidant that also acts as a preservative, allowing the oil to remain fresh from the supplier all the way to the restaurant. “
Yep, no dark secrets to making frys. The video outlines most all the steps. They skipped the peel step to remove the peel, and some heating and drying steps, and inspection and size sorting, plus bagging and boxing. But overall the video was a pretty good summary.
I would not have expected Silicone-Oil (dimethylpolysiloxane) as ingredient. Probably as anti-foaming agent. But this stuff is also used pharmaceutically against foaming (gas build up, flatulence) in the intestines.
Nom nom nom. Just don’t eat the burgers, that’s where all the secrets are.
Dear food police: eat kale and die. Won’t be long before they get deep fryers banned so us fat kids need this sage advice for when we have to set up our deep fryers next to the stills in the back woods to enjoy a decent batch of fries.
This guy http://www.topsecretrecipes.com/McDonalds-Recipes.html has reverse engineered clone recipes for not just the fries but the Big Mac, Special Sauce, McRib, McFlurry and more.
McDonalds makes excellent fries, anyone who disagrees is just being emotional about their hatred for fast food.
I once by chance was watching Food Network and saw Bobby Flay talk about his favorite fries recipe in the world, he recommended a place in Manhattan called Balthazar. They used the (fairly standard) process of fry, cool, fry again. It so happened I was going to NY that week, so I went out of my way to go to the place and order their ($15) side of fries. The fries were exact McDonald’s replicas, except instead of ketchup they were served with a garlic aioli or some other fancy mayo. They were great, but I don’t think they had any edge on McD’s fries whatsoever.
While unemployed in the US I took a decent paying part time job doing contract compliance as a 3rd party inspector. Pretty much verifying the process and ingredients vs the playbook of how the McD’s french fries were made at one plant. I seem to remember (damn almost 15 years ago now) hot air and an oil spray chiller and freezer for the frozen chips. The factory also had a line of spiced chips which was produced on an identical line except I remember a final shaker box for the powdered spices. What was fun was I had full access to the food lab and found that McD’s chips tasted pretty similar whether I fried them at the suggested temp or baked them in the oven. I have never managed to replicate the taste at home even with pre-boiling in salty-vinegary water; which is not what I remember from the production line at all. Now that I type that there could have been a boil first step, but I don’t think so.
There is more to the process than the flavour and texture of the end result, the blanching stages and the cooking temperature has a big influence on the levels of the carcinogen acrylamide in the final product. Using acetic acid may be helpful as acrylamide forms less readily in an acid environment. I’ll leave you to google the details, if you care at all.
Anyone know what I miss? Of course not, since I haven’t said it yet. However, what I miss is the late ’70’s and ’80’s. I remember a number of times where one of us was faffing around with something to make it do something that it didn’t previously do, and goof around with something to figure out how it worked. Generally, the conversations would go something like,
“Hey, what the heck are you doing?”
“I’m doing to make do !”
“WHAT? THAT IS AWESOME! MAKE IT DO IT AGAIN!/SHOW ME HOW!/WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DO THIS INSTEAD?”
That still exists, and I don’t want to pretend otherwise, but it seems now that people are more often responding to one of us faffing around with something to make it do something that it didn’t previously do, or goof around with something to figure out how it worked, with something like,
“Hey, what the heck are you doing?”
“I’m doing to make do !” (or in this case, “I’m doing to figure out how Rotten Ronnie’s make their quadrillion-dollar money-making fries!”)
“Why would you do that? What a waste of time./Their fries suck, and you should feel bad for doing this./You’re the reason we can’t have nice things.”
I’d never read up on how McD’s makes fries, though I don’t eat at McD’s, it was interesting enough for me to click on the link.
Fact is, with every unnecessary (I do not dispute that sometimes, people need to be brought back down to earth, or have their horrifying methods called to attention and corrected, among other things) comment that does not contribute to the conversation, instead showing what level of intolerance that current tinkerers have, it shrinks that little kid in me that saw possibility in everything.
C’mon folks, reinvigorate your sense of wonder. Stop trying to hinder people from finding out neat (and not-neat) things with your needless disagreeability, approach the things that your fellow solder fume inhaling compatriots/meat versions of voltage testers think interesting enough to share with everyone.
If you’re likely to respond to someone else’s findings/experiments with words that fall in the same category as, ‘stupid,’ or ‘worthless,’ maybe save yourself the time of writing it, and just think, “SOMEONE ON THE INTERNET IS DUMB.”
I mean, unless you’re doing it to pad out how many comments you write, I guess. Not much I can think of about that.
I look forward to more of the interesting things that you folks find that you choose to share with me.
Well, have a nice evening.
I hope you’re not imbibing alone, because whatever you’re having it’s clearly nice, potent stuff.
No indeed. I’m just increasingly weary of so many people being so unkind to each other, and cutting down what other people do.
If I wanted to be on 4chan, I’d go there to watch people be horrid to each other.
I’m with Julia on this one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DF31qCrclC0
It’s a bit late, I’ve been using the article for years now on making fries ????
The article is from 2010 Oo.
My idea of how to replicate McDonald’s Fries. (Actually this aplies to just about any McDonalds food as well as much of what other fast-food chains sell)
1 – Make or obtain a french-fry recipee
2 – Prepare some fries according to the recipee
3 – Is the result mildly addictive? If not then skip to step 5
4 – Did trying them give you a heart attack? If so then skip to step 7
5 – Slightly modify the recipee
6 – Go back to step 1
7 – Add toys and comercials with animated or dressed up characters that appeal to children
8 – Profit immensly while a whole generation becomes lethargic, sick couch potatoes
Why the hell would any hacker want to replicate something so evil?
Seems a little Gizmodo-ish to keep this slugfest featured.
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