How do we make the perfect chips every time? It’s not by accident, that’s for sure – we do everything from sugar-testing to employing potato nannies and even using airbeds during the harvest process. Simpsons really do go above and beyond to care for our prized spuds! Read on to find out the truth behind our perfect chips…
The perfect chip in our eyes has a perfect crunch on the outside, a lightly fluffy middle and a rich potato flavour. We take our chips exceedingly seriously which is why we are so rigorous in the methods we use.
James and Bonny have travelled the UK in search of the best potatoes and there is no doubt that the best ones do come from Cambridgeshire. We have a great relationship with our potato suppliers, such as farmer Tony Lee, who has been supplying the Simpson family’s fish and chip shops since 1976.
James thinks it’s well worth putting in the effort to find the best suppliers: “We only work with farmers who have invested in their land and machinery to ensure we receive the best potatoes. For example, our one supplier Tony has a tractor that he uses to harvest the potatoes which has an airbed in the trailer that the harvested potatoes are stored on. We love this and we want our potatoes to be treated as if they were as delicate as eggs. There is one thing for sure, we don’t want potatoes arriving with us all bruised and scarred.”
We then use a specialist company, Isle of Ely Produce, who act as ‘potato nannies’ and guard their spuds through their journey from field to fryer. They transport the potatoes across the country and babysit them until we need them at the chip shop. The potatoes are stored in high-grade air-sealed units and are tested regularly in a laboratory to pinpoint the best time for eating.
We have approximately 2.5 tonnes of potatoes delivered to our shop every week – that’s a lot of spuds! Arriving in three batches, each batch is then tested meticulously. Our Head Fryer will cut a sample of potatoes in half and, using a diabetic glucose testing stick, will test the sugar levels in each potato. Only potatoes with a glucose reading of less than 0.25% will be used.
James explains: “Potatoes with too high a sugar reading will result in sugars caramelising and turning the chip brown and wrinkly. If the sugar content is too high, we say the chip will do a Benidorm… that is, it comes out looking like it has spent too much time in the sun in Benidorm – brown, wrinkly and a bit leathery!”
We then fry our chips in groundnut oil, as recommended by Heston Blumenthal. This pure and odour-free oil can be heated to an incredibly high temperature to make sure our chips are crunchy on the outside then almost steamed within.
So, now you know – there’s a lot of care behind your portion of Simpsons finest! Come in and tuck into a portion today.