The dish has three components — potatoes, cheese sauce and bacon. Greens are optional but they do add a freshness that only fresh leaves can provide.
Given that all three components need to be cooked, how is this a fast and easy recipe? Let’s start with why it’s fast. The trick is to cook two components at the same time. The fries will need 20 to 30 minutes in the air fryer and, in that time, you can brown the bacon and make the cheese sauce.
Why is it easy? Because using frozen fries from the grocery means you don’t have to peel and cut the potatoes. And because frozen fries are pre-fried, they will turn perfectly crisp in the air fryer. No deep frying, no draining. You don’t just save time on prep but on clean up too.
So, once you have your potatoes in the air fryer, cut bacon rashers into thin strips and spread in a heated pan. Leave until a little fat has been rendered the stir occasionally until the bacon is browned and crisp. Drain on paper towels.
The bacon will be ready before the fries are done. That means you have more than enough time to make your cheese sauce. It takes less than five minutes. Just melt cheese in milk. Add salt if you used a rather bland cheese.
But what cheese is ideal? The kind that melts fast. American cheese and all its iterations, especially. They are processed cheeses so they melt fast in hot liquid. I like a combination of Monterey Jack and cheddar.
Fast and easy cheesy bacon fries
- Air fryer
- Spray the air fryer basket with oil, spread the frozen fries evenly and spray the potatoes with oil.
- Cook the potatoes at 200C stirring them once halfway through.
- While the potatoes cook, heat a frying pan and spread the bacon in a thin layer. Cook, stirring after a minute or two, until browned and crisp. Drain on paper towels.
- Heat the milk in a sauce pan.
- Break the cheese into small pieces (or use a shredder) and drop into the hot milk. Cook, stirring, until the cheese is fully melted.
- Spread half of the fries in a shallow bowl, drizzle half of the cheese sauce over them and top with half of the bacon. Repeat using the remaining fries, cheese sauce and bacon.
- Sprinkle scallions over the cheesy bacon fries and serve immediately.