The Complex Aromas Of French Fries... Ironing Board?

If you never made it as a wine taster, take heart; one day there may be a job for you as a french fry taster.

Researchers at the University of Leeds were commissioned by the Potato Council to dissect the aromas of french fries, or "chips," as they are called in the U.K. Using a process called gas chromatography mass spectrometry, food scientists were able to separate the various aromas of the humble chip.

Are you ready?

The aroma analysis of the french fry is composed of butterscotch, cocoa, onion, flowers, cheese and... ironing boards.

Dr. Graham Clayton, who led the chip research, said that regardless of whether the chips were fried or cooked in the oven, the aroma of chips is very complex... which is why chips are everyone's favorite.

The kinds of potatoes used, the oils, cooking temperature, and cooking method all play a part in the aroma of the chip, making each batch somewhat different from the other. Dr. Clayton proposed that the "findings will see chips treated like wine in the future - with chip fans turning into buffs as they impress their friends with eloquent descriptions of the favorite fries."

What a career!

BBC News via Epicurious

Feb 12, 2009
by Anonymous


I guess I couldn't have that job 'cause I only like ordinary fries with lots of salt and sometimes a little ketchup...but then again even as simple as that tastes differently depending on how makes them at the fast food place. *sighs* I wish I could eat french fries and burgers more often.