We like to eat 'clean' in our house. By this I mean real whole foods whenever possible. Avoiding preservatives and food with ridiculously long shelf lives is not always easy when you are a busy parent. This doesn't mean we don't get all the good things that kids love like hamburgers, or spaghetti or chips. However I always look for ways to make them a bit healthier, and like most parents, my time is precious, so the quicker something is the better!
'Chips' are one of those things that can mean a different thing depending on what country you are in. In my native Australia, we call french fries 'hot chips' and 'chips' would be the snack variety that you buy in a bag with flavoured salt. So to clarify, by 'chips' I mean any kind of fried potatoes. This includes French fries, wedges, crisps etc. In general 'chipped potatoes'.
This method of making chips can be adapted to any type of fried potatoes. If you don't have a mandolin the cutting may take a little longer. If you do have a mandolin it is very quick to cut your potatoes in thick or thin strips, in thick circles, in thin circles. Wedges and cubes need to be cut with a knife. I leave the skin on.
When your potatoes are cut, put them in a bowl with a quarter of a cup of water, cover and steam them in the microwave on high for 5 minutes. Everybody's microwaves are different so use 5 minutes as a guide but you want the potatoes mostly cooked but not so soft that they fall apart.
Drain the water from the potatoes. In the same bowl add 2 tablespoons of oil. While olive oil is nice and healthy I don't recommend it for chips, it has a lower cooking temperature so they won't be as crispy. Vegetable oil is fine, I often add a dash of peanut oil as this has one of the higher cooking temperatures. You can also add some seasoning at this point. For example, flavoured salt, lemon pepper, some chopped rosemary and a squeeze of lemon, even half a crumbled stock cube. Cover the bowl and give it a good shake to coat the potatoes with the oil and flavouring.
Spread the chips on an oven tray and grill for approximately 3 minutes on each side or until golden and crispy.
Don't forget, to add variety you can use other vegetables as well as potatoes, for example sweet potato, pumpkin or parsnips.