Cold french fries are seemingly one of the few leftover foods that cannot be salvaged. Once a fry starts to cool, the water inside the fluffy starch granules moves out towards the crust, rendering the insides of the fry grainy and the outsides mushy. It’s a truly terrible situation.
Attempting to reheat them in the oven doesn’t help much—it just makes them tastes like warm cardboard, rather than cold cardboard—and re-frying them requires a good bit of oil for mediocre results. The best, most elegant way to reheat fries and achieve maximum crispness is to toss them into our favourite handy appliance: the waffle maker.
Now, I must stress that these waffle fries will not be the same as truly fresh french fries, as there isn’t an easy way to rehydrate those starch granules. But smashing them in the waffle maker will drive off the moisture that’s sogging up the exterior, while also creating crispy and crunchy nooks and crannies (extra surface area), with a texture that’s very similar to a home fry-style breakfast potato.
Just heat your waffle maker to its highest setting, place a handful of cold, sad fries in the centre, and smash ‘em in between the hot plates. Once you see dark, golden brown pockets of waffled fries, plate and consume them immediately. They’re good dipped in ketchup or a spicy mayo, but they’re particularly pleasant as a platform for a fried egg, and their extra-crispy nature makes them ideal for dousing in gravy.