Instant Pot: Crunchy Potato Wedges

What's a burger dinner without french fries?! I'm always in search of french fry recipes and there are so many ways to prepare them. This time around, I made these Crunchy Potato Wedges in my Instant Pot to serve alongside the All in One Burgers I made. I enjoyed this dish even though I prefer thin, skinny fries instead. I will say that these are hearty fries so a few is more than enough for a serving. What piqued my interest about this recipe is the use of a simple batter and spice blend to season the fries...

French fries typically require cooking twice. The first time is to cook the potato and soften it up a bit and the second time is to get a nice crisp texture and golden color. For these Crunchy Potato Wedges, potatoes are sliced, tossed with oil and spices, and then cooked in the microwave. (Yes - the microwave!) The potatoes were cooled a bit and then dredged in a mixture of flour and cornstarch. Then the potatoes get a quick dip in a mixture of buttermilk and baking soda. Another dredge in flour and cornstarch finished the potatoes before they were deep fried. After frying, the fries got another toss in seasonings to give them an extra boost of flavor. The result is a super crispy, coated french fry that has a nice spice flavor from the seasonings used. It was a nice change of pace from the usual french fry recipe and it gave me some ideas to use the flour/batter technique with other things! If you don't have an Instant Pot, you can make it the traditional way using this recipe here!

Crunchy Potato Wedges

IP water mixture:
1 cup water
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 3/4 pounds russet potatoes (about 3 large), cut into 1/4 inch wedges
vegetable oil for frying (about 3 quarts)
1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

In your Instant Pot:

Plug in the IP with insert set in place.

Place trivet inside of IP insert.

Prepare the IP water mixture by combining 1 cup cold water, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda to a large measuring cup; stir and pour into IP.

Combine the salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, cayenne and oregano in a bowl. Reserve 1 tablespoon of spice mixture to season potatoes later.

Add potato wedges to spices in the bowl and toss to coat. Transfer seasoned potato wedges onto trivet in IP.

Secure the lid of the IP and ensure the valve is set to SEALING.

Press MANUAL and adjust the time to 2 minutes on HIGH pressure.

The display will reflect ON while the IP comes to pressure. Allow a few minutes for your IP to come to pressure.

Once at pressure, the display will reflect 2 (the number of minutes you initially set) and will begin to countdown to 0 minutes.

When the IP beeps after pressure cooking for 2 minutes, turn the setting on top of your IP to VENTING. Doing so allows the IP to quickly release any remaining pressure (also known as QPR or QR). I use a wooden spoon to carefully turn the setting to avoid close contact with the potential steam. You may also want to turn your IP away from cabinets to allow the released steam to escape freely. The pin at the top of your IP will drop when all pressure has been released and it's safe to open.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a Dutch oven over high heat to 350 degrees.

Prepare the potato wedges batter. Combine the flour and cornstarch in a medium bowl. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk and baking soda.

Open up your IP when the pin has dropped (allow a few minutes for this to happen).

Working in 2 batches, dredge the potato wedges in the flour mixture, dip in the buttermilk mixture and dredge again in the flour mixture. Shake off the excess flour and place on a wire rack or cookie sheet.

When the oil is ready, add half the coated wedges and fry until deep golden brown (about 4-6 minutes.) 

Transfer the wedges to a large bowl and toss with 1 teaspoon of the spice mixture. Drain the wedges on a baking sheet lined with paper towels. 

Return the oil to 350 degrees and repeat with the second batch of wedges. 

Serve with extra spice mixture on the side. 

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