Ever had a Jojo? How about grilled Jojos?
That’s what I thought. You aren’t even sure what a Jojo is. When I had my first Jojo I didn’t know what they were called but they were delicious.
A Jojo is essentially a potato that is cut in quarters, lengthwise with skin left on. Than it is coated in a light, crisp, highly seasoned coating and fried. The best ones are actually “pressure-fried” as in “broasted.”
Now I know what you are thinking…”steak fries, I have those all the time.” Nope these are not steak fries – they are Jojos. (steak fries are thinner and don’t have a coating.)
The first ones I ever had, and these are the stick by which I measure all others, had a coating similar to fried chicken but not as thick. My mouth waters just thinking about it. And to think that was over 30 years ago at a very small town convenience store in the middle of rural New Hampshire!
My husband had his first Jojos about 15 years ago at a local joint in his neighborhood of Cambridge, MA. A place that happens to have the best fried chicken in the area. No surprise there – they go hand in hand.
Anyway this past weekend I thought it might be fun to try a “grilled Jojo.” I coated the cut potatoes in oil and after perusing several variations of the coating recipe on the web, I settled on simple coating of seasoned salt and granulated garlic powder. I didn’t want to try to grill a potato coated first with a light egg wash and then lightly coated in seasoned flour, but that would have been much more traditional. If I was frying or even oven-baking that is what I would have done. But since I was grilling I didn’t want to risk it.
They came out pretty good and even my neighbor thought so when we shared a few across the fence. I will admit that although delicious, they were more like a grilled steak fry and not as much like the crispy, coated “fried” Jojo of my youth that I was hoping to recreate. Once this heatwave is over – I will be firing up the indoor kitchen and making some proper fried Jojos!
I felt it only made sense to serve these with grilled brats as a nod to the Wisconsin origins of the original “broaster” machine that has made so many delicious Jojos throughout the years.
Also a little roasted corn on the grill is always delicious.
This lovely blog (click here) posted a similar nostalgia for Jojos back in January 2008 and has posted a great recipe as well.