August 12: Julienne Fries Day

August 12, 2009 is National Julienne Fries Day. Julienne refers to the cut of most vegetables, but usually potatoes, into a fry-like shape.

The term was brought to the forefront of American pop culture by Ron Popeil’s commercials for the Veg-O-Matic, “It slices! It dices! It makes Julienne fries!” Urban legend indicates the word is derived from Julia Child.

To further celebrate the day, here’s a special Julienne recipe


Baked Sweet Potato Julienned Fries

2 sweet potatoes, light olive oil or canola oil, as needed, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 pinch red pepper, 1 pinch cinnamon, sea salt, champagne vinegar

1. Preheat the oven to 450°.

2. Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into long thin shoestrings. Toss them into a bowl and drizzle with light olive oil, stirring lightly to coat.

3. Season potatoes with cumin, thyme, black pepper, red pepper and cinnamon.

4. Throw them on a baking sheet. Spread evenly in one layer, if possible.

5. Bake in the upper portion of your oven for about 20 to 30 minutes, until they are tender and sizzling and crispy around the edges.

6. Sprinkle generously with sea salt as soon as you take them out of the oven. Serve with a sprinkle of Champagne vinegar (at the table), if desired.

Happy National Julienne Fries Day!

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