We know that French fries come from a French-speaking country, but their exact origin is unclear. The Belgians claim they first fried potatoes cut into the shape of fish when the river Meuse froze over in the 17th century, preventing them from catching real seafood. According to the French, fried potato wedges didn't appear until Parisian street vendors starting selling them 100 years later in the 18th century. The true story is still up for debate, but the passion people have for this potato product is undeniable.

In the latest episode of Food History, host Justin Dodd looks at the crispy, crunchy world of deep-fried potatoes. A French fry is just one of the many forms the food group can take. The video also explores the stories behind tater tots, hash browns, latkes, and potato chips.

Fried potatoes have been present for many important moments in culinary history, from early White House dinners to the rise of fast food. If you're interested in learning more about the classic side dish, grab some ketchup (or malt vinegar, or mayo, depending on which part of the world you're in) and watch the video below.

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