How far in advance can I do this? If I par-fry them, will they still turn brown over-time? I have dinner guests on Sunday evening, and will be serving steak frites. Today is Friday and I will be out-of-town on Saturday until Sunday afternoon. I'm wondering if I will be able to peel, cut and par-fry the potatoes to avoid doing it on Sunday. Should I refrigerate of freeze them?
Edit: I have no idea how/why I posted this to the Quebec board! I need it moved to Home Cooking but don't know how to do it.
Look up Alton Brown's method of making french fries. It's a double-frying method that might help - you may need to experiment first with storage methods lest the first-fry results become limp and icky before you need them.
Something else that is purported to help is to cut the raw potatoes into fry-size pieces, then cover them with water and refrigerate for 24 hours. Allegedly this is supposed to somehow magically leech starch out and make your fries crisper thereby. I have no knowledge of that, but I have kept whole peeled potatoes in the fridge like this for at least 3 days with no degradation or spoilage. Having them cut up in advance so all you have to do is drain them and pat them dry may save you some time come frying day.
First fry, you do it until it is tender, but keep the heat low enough to not give the fries any color.
We did this regularly at Restaurants. Par cook till soft at 300F or so . Drain. Refrigerate. Then refry at 375F till golden and crisp.