3-4 large beets in a variety of colors (about 1½–2 pounds)
Oil for frying
Grainy sea salt
Prepare a draining station near your cooktop by lining a baking sheet with paper towels or a paper bag. Place a cooling rack on top, laid upside down. Make sure your salt is handy. Pour about 1 1/2 to 2 inches of oil into a wide, heavy pot. There should be at least 2 inches of headspace above the oil. Prepare the beets by removing the root and stem ends and peeling them. Cut them into even 1/16 inch slices. A mandoline will make the job easy and precise.
Bring the oil to 325°F over high heat. Slide some of the beet slices into the oil, making sure you don’t crowd the pot. The slices should bubble briskly on contact. Move and turn them constantly with a slotted spoon or spider. When the bubbling stops and the edges are curled — usually in 1 to 3 minutes, depending on thickness — the chips are done.
Transfer the chips to the draining station and quickly sprinkle them with salt while they’re still glistening. Continue to fry the remaining slices, allowing the oil to return to 325°F and making room on the draining station for the next batch. Don’t forget to salt the chips as they come out of the oil.
Serve the chips immediately or hold them for up to six hours uncovered at room temperature. To store the chips, allow them to cool and dry for at least an hour before transferring them to an airtight container. They can be stored for about five days. Makes 3-4 cups.
This recipe was originally published in Chris Bryant’s book Chips: Reinventing a Favorite Food (Lark/Sterling Publishing, 2014).