This recipe for fried potato and onion strings comes from a restaurant at Universal Studios Orlando. My wife and I love the Universal theme parks in Orlando. Their theme-ing is on point. The rides are intense. Harry Potter world. What is not to love?
Though we’ve never lived in Florida, we have had annual passes on two separate occasions. Working for an airline helped make it possible to travel, though sometimes it would take a few extra stops. If you are ever headed down there, let me know so I can join you. I can always use an excuse to make the trip.
But back to the dish.
Across the way from the Mummy ride is an Irish pub called Finnegan’s Bar and Grill. During a long day on our feet walking throughout the park, we stopped by for a sit-down meal. And we started with an appetizer that sounded amazing.
They call it Finnegan’s Potato & Onion Webb. Their description reads: “Thinly sliced potatoes & onions, hand-dipped in beer batter, crisply fried golden brown & served with malt vinegar.” Which is exactly what I intend to copycat.
This dish is salty, fried onions and potatoes in thin little strings. If you are looking for some sweeter onions, try making some caramelized onions instead. Continue on for crunchy goodness.
Preparation is key. When cutting the onion and potato down to the strings, try to get them to the same size and thickness. If they are a similar size, then they will fry up consistently in the hot oil so everything can come out perfectly cooked at the same time.
Be careful on when you slice up your potatoes. They will begin to oxidize and turn a greyish-rust color. This is especially pronounced with russet potatoes because of their super high starch content. But it is that same starch content that makes them excellent for frying.
To combat that oxidizing you can use a little bit of acid – like lemon juice or white vinegar – to toss with the potato strings. You can also submerge the sliced potato in some lightly salted water. Or you can just slice them right before smothering with the batter.
You will definitely want to use a deep fryer or a deep-sided pot with hot oil. An air fryer is not ideal for this. It is too wet of a sauce to cook quickly in the air fryer. I use this deep fryer from Amazon. It is enormous. Because I always make way more food than needed.
What to Serve with Fried Potato and Onion
Fried onions and potatoes are amazing by themselves. Hot out of the fryer they are crispy and delicious. But they also go great with a whole lot of other sauces, toppings, and flavors.
- Malt vinegar
- Aioli (any flavor)
- Fry sauce
- Tartar sauce
However you serve it, make sure it is perfectly fried to a crisp and golden brown that’ll give you a crunch they can hear from your neighbor’s house.
Fried Potato & Onion StringsCourse: AppetizersDifficulty: Moderate
Crispy, crunchy, perfectly fried, golden-brown potato and onion strings
1 cup flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 tablespoon pepper
1 large onion
3 large russet potatoes, peeled
1 and 1/3 cup club soda
Enough vegetable or canola oil for frying
- Mix together the flour, cornstarch, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper in a large mixing bowl and set aside
- Preheat your frying oil to 350°F (175°C), either in the deep fryer or in a deep sided pot
- Slice or grate the potato and onion into thin strings using a mandolin, food processor, or your sharpest knife
- Mix the egg and club soda into the flour mixture until it is fully incorporated
- Add the sliced potato and onion strings to the batter, and mix around until they are fully coated
- Fry your potatoes and onions for 6 to 8 minutes until crispy and golden-brown – note that you may need to fry them in batches depending on the size of your fryer