By COLlive reporter
Some call them the most coveted french fries in the kosher food scene — and the secret behind them is now being released to the public.
“When it opened, Basil made news by breaking the mold of kosher restaurants. Here was a hip place that you could experience something a little different, where the menu was seasonal, exciting, and tapped the diversity of New York,” write food authors Victoria Dwek and Leah Schapira.
While Chef Jose E. Soto keeps the menu updated seasonally, regulars of Basil Pizza and Wine Bar can look forward to trying new, exciting dishes or coming back for their favorites, the authors write in their new book “Secret Restaurant Recipes from the world’s top Kosher Restaurants.”
And one of those favorites is, hands down, the signature Basil Fries.
After some deliberation, Chef Soto and Basil’s owner Dani Branover agreed to share the recipe for the dish that has people traveling from out of the Crown Heights neighborhood to try.
In honor of Chanukah, a holiday otherwise known as one drenched in oil, COLlive.com was given permission by ArtScroll, an imprint of Mesorah Publications, to post the recipe on the web – for the very first time.
Basil Fries – The Recipe
2-4 servings, dairy
5 Idaho potatoes, sliced into French fries
• Oil, for frying
2 pinches kosher salt
• Pinch freshly ground black pepper or crushed peppercorns
• Pinch chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
4 egg yolks
1 whole egg
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1½ cups canola oil
2 tsp kosher salt
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup truffle oil
1 Tbsp roasted garlic
• Rinse cut potatoes well with cold water to remove the starch (this prevents them from sticking together). Drain and dry completely to avoid splattering.
• Prepare the mayonnaise: In a blender or food processor (a Vitamix is recommended), combine egg yolks, egg, lemon juice, and vinegar. Blend for 30 seconds.
• Add canola oil in a slow stream while blending; blend until emulsified.
• Add salt. Continue to blend while adding olive oil in a slow stream. Finally, slowly add in truffle oil while blending. Add roasted garlic.
• Heat oil in a deep fryer to 250ºF. Add French fries and fry for 5-6 minutes. Remove from oil and place on a baking sheet. Place sheet in the refrigerator for ½ hour, until French fries are cold.
• Heat oil in a deep fryer to 350ºF. Add cooled French fries and fry again for 2-3 minutes, until golden and crisp. Season with salt, pepper, and parsley. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
• Serve truffle mayonnaise in a ramekin alongside fries.
• The best potato to use is the pricey Kennebec, but it is rare to find it in grocery stores. Finer restaurants buy these potatoes through suppliers.
• The truffle mayo will yield about 3 cups, more than you need for the fries. You Can divide recipe in half (good luck splitting the whole egg).
• Chef Soto recommends D’Allesandro Truffle Oil, the brand used in the restaurant and which is certified kosher by KOF-K.
Secret Restaurant Recipes From the World’s Top Kosher Restaurants is available at artscroll.com