potato chips. Chips that start out as a potato in your
hand and involve not one drop of hot, splattery oil.
It's a dream come true, isn't it? But all this can be
yours if the price is right! The price you pay for the
chip maker, that is. I got mine, a "ringu de chippu,"
on eBay for $12, shipping from Japan included. At any
given time you can see a bunch of these things by searching
eBay for "microwave chip maker." Some of them
have spaces to only make about two dozen chips at a
time; mine has a larger capacity.
Since the instructions were in Japanese, I Googled
around to find out how to use it. First, get you a tater.
A small russet is good. Wash it, peel it if you're a
wimp who is scared of potato peel, then slice it paper
thin. If you bought a chip ring, chances are a cheap
slicer came with it. Otherwise... I don't know, maybe
a large vegetable peeler would work.
Dump the slices in cold water and slosh them around
to get rid of excess starch. Drain, then pour about
a tablespoon of vegetable oil over them and mix them
around good to coat the slices. Add a little salt while
mixing if you want salted chips.
Put the chip ring on a microwave-safe plate, then
stick slices of potato in the little slots. Put the
whole shebang in the microwave and run it at full power.
How long? That depends on how powerful your microwave
is, how thick the potatoes are sliced, and how many
are in the chip maker. For the batch above I did an
initial run of 6 minutes, then added 30-minute bursts
until the chips were starting to brown, which is how
you tell if they're done. (If they don't brown they
don't get crispy.) I think it was about 8 minutes, all
told, but I've found that the time does vary. Better
to undershoot and then cook some more than to burn 'em.
When it's done take the ring & plate out of the
microwave and put the chips into a bowl. Since the chips
wilt during cooking and get all curly, as you see above,
some of them may not want to come out, so you may have
to break a few. Never fear, they taste just as good.
Variations: You can
chip different things in this ring. The packaging shows
kabocha and lotus root chips. I've tried lotus root,
using the same directions as above, and it turned out
pretty nifty. Sweet potato chips turned out awesome.
I also tried sweet plantain, which did not work as well
because they melted out of the maker and onto the plate,
and then stuck together and hardened because of the
sugar content. Tasted great, but not what I was
looking for in a chip. I'll try it with a green plantain