Pommes Soufflés (puffed potatoes or souffleed potatoes)
The story goes that Pommes Soufflés were accidentally discovered in 1837 at the inauguration of a new railway line from Paris to Saint-Germain-en-Lay.
There was to be a lunch for the dignitaries at the restaurant in the new station. The train was having problems making it up a steep slope at the final approach to the station.
The chef had prepared some sliced fried potatoes at the appointed time, but when the guests didn't arrive on time, he had to remove the half cooked potatoes and allow them to drain and cool.
After several attempts the train finally made it, and caught by surprise at the unexpected arrival of the guests, the chef plunged the potatoes quickly into very hot oil and to his amazement, saw them puff up.
Soufflé potatoes must be cooked twice.
Once at a low temperature (325°F) and a second time at a high temperature (375°F).
At the second high temperature cooking the surface of the potatoes crisp instantly and form a waterproof skin, which will cause them to swell as the moisture inside turns quickly to steam causing the slices to puff up.
Pommes Soufflés Recipe