2 large russet potatoes, peeled
2 quarts peanut oil
â€¢ sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
Using a mandoline or vegetable slicer, cut the potatoes lengthwise into julienne or â€œmatchsticksâ€. As you cut the potatoes, place them immediately into a large bowl of ice water; change the water several times until it runs clear and free of starch particles; cover the potatoes by at least one inch with fresh ice water and soak for at least 30 minutes or as long as 24 hours.
Fill a deep-fat fryer or deep saucepan* with fry basket insert halfway with oil, and attach a candy/deep-fry thermometer. Slowly heat the oil over medium-low heat until it reaches 325Â°F to 350Â°F.
Drain the potatoes and blot thoroughly with paper towels until very dry. (If potatoes are wet, oil will splatter during frying.)
Carefully add the potatoes in small batches to the hot oil, stirring to prevent sticking. Cook for about 5 to 6 minutes to blanch. (Potatoes will be pale.) Using a spider or a large-hole slotted spoon, remove the potatoes to a wire rack set over paper towels to drain. Let rest on the rack for 10 minutes or as long as 2 hours.
When all of the potatoes have been blanched, increase the oil temperature to 375Â° to 390Â°F. In small batches, fry the potatoes a second time until golden brown and puffed, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Transfer the potatoes to baking sheets lined with several layers of paper towels. Season to taste with salt and pepper; garnish with fresh parsley. (Note: While frying the remaining batches of blanched potatoes, place the Allumette Potatoes in a 300Â°F oven until ready to serve.)
*Note: It is very important to use a deep saucepan. When the potatoes are added to the hot oil, the oil bubbles vigorously and rises up the sides of the pot very quickly. If a shallow saucepan is used, the oil can easily rise up and over the sides onto the stovetop.
Make It Ahead: Wrap blanched potatoes in thick paper towels and seal in zip-top bags; freeze for up to 1 month.