Thursday, June 4, 2009

better chips better for you

Good news that the faithful deep fryed chip has had a makeover from "The Chip Group."

"The seven standards which include using less salt, cutting a bigger and straighter chip and using low fat cooking oil have been identified by The Chip Group – a partnership between industry groups and the Heart Foundation.

Group chairwoman Glenda Gourley said the standards were developed after the Ministry of Health granted funding to implement a three year programme focused on improving the nutritional profile of chips."

A 3 year program... wow that's commitment!

So what are these 7 new guidelines?

"The standards are:

* Chip size – Use thick straight cut chips of at least 13mm.
* Cooking – Use a digital thermometer to check the oil temperature. Cook chips at a temperature of 175degC for between three and four minutes for final fry.
* Drainage – Bang or shake the basket vigorously twice then hang for at least 20 seconds.
* Frying medium maintenance – Maintain frying medium in good quality. Keep fryer topped up with fresh frying medium. Cool frying medium and cover fryers when not in use. Test and discard frying medium when it shows signs of degradation.
* Frying medium – Use a frying medium that meets the following criteria: saturated fat equal to, or less than 28 per cent; trans fat equal to, or less than 1 per cent.
* Salt – Use salt sparingly, if seasoning chips.
* Training and education – Adopt best practice frying training for staff."

Now these standards are for commercial operations, additional 'home' standards could include:

Don't leave the pan unattended, ever.
Don't eat too many, nor too little.
Choose the correct variety of potato.
When buttering/margarineing your bread, a little goes a long way.
Don't drown your chip butties in tomato sauce, conversely, don't be stingey with it.
Best results come from double frying in clarified butter.
Wedges are okay, but they tend to be cooked in the oven rather than fried.

If I could take one vegetable with me to a desert island it would be the potato. What vege would you take?

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