Nukin’ Chips, and I don’t mean Ponch and Jon

justin Awesomeness, food, monkey, Stupidity 1 Comment

There is a special place in my heart for the relationship between the microwave oven and the potato. Such an innocuous combination was responsible for the beginning of an amazing friendship and the formation of the Forkers.

With that in mind, I approached the melding of microwaves and starchy tuber after reading Savory Sweet Life’s article on “How To Make Potato Chips In The Microwave” for a new approach on things to make with potatoes in a magnetron environment.

Unlike most endeavors I undertake, I actually wanted to follow the instructions on this one. The last thing I needed to do on a lazy Sunday afternoon was to have to explain to squeezle why and how I’d managed to blow up the kitchen and set the microwave on fire. I realize most modern microwaves are smarter than I am, but I’ve been very wary of them since the incident I had with the microwave that was in our house when we first bought it that operated just fine with the door open. It took one good burn on my hand to figure out that I probably wasn’t smart enough to operate that particular machine.

We’ve since replaced that oven (a couple times, I think), and our current microwave presented me with a few “challenges” when approached from the chip-makers perspective.

First and foremost, the instructions say to turn off the rotation in your oven if it does that. Since mine rotates and doesn’t have the ability to disable the rotation, I pulled out the gigantic glass tray and elevated it using some prep bowls to inhibit the rotations. From there I was able to follow the instructions: putting down parchment paper, covering the paper in thinly sliced potatoes (thank you scary mandolin cutter), spraying the mess with cooking spray and applying a sprinkle of sea salt.

Now came the scary part. I was about 50/50 convinced that the microwave was going to implode when run for five minutes with not much other than a quarter of a potato and a sheet of paper in it. To my surprise, it did not. What it also did not do, however, was crisp up those chips. I had to add an additional two and a half minutes to the time in order to get crispy chips with the stationary setup. It was vitally important to monitor the chips after the first three minutes because they all pretty much cooked at different rates.

For the second run (you honestly don’t get that many chips down in a standard-sized microwave), squeezle suggested I yoink out the elevator bowls and let the stupid oven rotate. This worked infinitely better than the stationary chips. After about three minutes, chips were crisping up and my speed to delivery (aka, squeezle’s belly) was way faster.

One potato about the size of a pint glass generated four and a half runs through the microwave and a pretty normal serving size to go with sammiches that squeezle made for dinner. We were about to embark on a second potato, but figured the oven could use a bit of a rest since the glass tray was close to lava hot and the kitchen reeked of potato steam.

That being said, I found it a bit too easy to make these chips. They were a snap to make and remarkably tasty. Usually when I set out on a “project” such as this, I make a huge mess and usually end up hurting myself or causing some sort of trouble that I, then, have to resolve.

None of that was true with this. Even with my liberal applications of cooking spray (a potential for me seriously injuring myself in a plethora of ways), nothing bad happened. I didn’t start any fires, I didn’t cut myself on the razor-sharp mandolin, and I didn’t leave the kitchen looking like the Swedish Chef had done a guest spot.

I guess there is always next time.

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