Certain areas are known for certain food specialties. In San Diego, it's Fish Tacos and Carne Asada fries. When I lived outside of Pittsburgh, it was pierogies and Primanti Brothers sandwiches. What separates a Primanti Brothers sandwich from elsewhere is the inclusion of french fries, IN the sandwich. For the first 30something years of my life, I was under the impression it was a specialty unique to Western PA. It's a genius idea, but really, who needs french fries sandwiched between bread? Crazy midwesterners, that's who.
But in reading Trail of Crumbs, Sunee introduced me to the Southern variation. New Orleans is known for a variety of food specialties too, including the "Po-Boy" (which is one of Thatboy's favorites) a sandwich on a french baguette. Typically I've had po-boys filled with meat, or shrimp, but according to Sunee, french fries are also a traditional choice. She speaks of bars that had these delivered to patrons, and really, that makes sense too. What sounds better after a night of drinking than french fries, slathered with horseradish cream, between a buttery french roll?
French Fry Po-Boy with Horseradish Creme Fraiche (From Trail of Crumbs)
2 large yukon gold potatoes
1 cup canola oil
fresh-ground black pepper
1/2 cup creme fraiche
1 Tbsp mayonnaise
1 tsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp horseradish
1 loaf french bread
- Peel potatoes then cut lengthwise into quarter-inch-thick sticks. Rinse potatoes in several changes of cold water. Drain in a colander, spread cut potatoes in a single layer on several paper towels, and pat very dry.
- Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over moderate heat until it begins to shimmer. Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 200 degrees. Once oil is ready, fry potatoes, turning occasionally, about 6-7 minutes per batch, until golden. Transfer fries with a slotted spoon to a baking pan lined with several layers of dry paper towels.
- Sprinkle fries with salt and pepper and keep warm in oven.
- Combine creme fraiche, mayonnaise, lemon juice and horseradish in a small bowl.
- Season with salt to taste.
- Add a few dashes of hot sauce, if desired.
- Pile onto french bread.