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McDonald’s Tests Shakable Seasoned Fries

McDonald’s Tests Shakable Seasoned Fries

These are the Shake Shake fries from China...American versions of these zesty shoestrings will hopefully be available in America soon!

Just call it the McShake. After more than half a century of the golden arches, McDonald’s has finally decided to enter the delicious and spicy world of seasoned fries. McDonald’s is testing Shakin’ Seasoned Fries, which allows customers to make their own flavor-kicking combinations by pouring packets of seasoning (so far available in garlic parmesan, zesty ranch, and spicy buffalo flavors), into the bag of french fries, and shaking them up, and as the bag of fries says: “Seasoned fries. Shake your taste buds."

See more delicious fries around America with The Daily Meal's America's 30 Best French Fries

The zesty fries will be tested starting this week in Northern California and St. Louis. Even though Shakin’ Seasoned Fries is new to American markets, McDonald’s has been serving versions of these seasoned fries overseas in China, India, and Australia, where they’re known as the “Shake Shake.”

McDonald’s wasn’t ready to announce yet if the fries will become a more permanent menu item in all McDonald’s stores.

"As with all tests, we aren't in a position to draw conclusions or make assumptions about the test, since it is just beginning," said McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb in a statement.

Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @JoannaFantozzi


McDonald&rsquos Has Responded To That Video Of A 24-Year-Old Hamburger That Didn&rsquot Decompose

You may have recently seen the video of a woman who has kept a McDonald&rsquos hamburger and fries in a box in her closet for more than 20 years. It's just the latest in the type of story that seems to resurface every few months, of people showing off fast food they have kept for extended periods of time, only to have it sit in perfect condition all those years later. But now McDonald's has issued a statement responding.

In a post on its newsroom, the fast food chain did not mention the TikTok in question by name but it began by simply stating that "in the right environment, our burgers, like most other foods, could decompose." They went on to say that the reason why many foods do not show these signs of aging is because of a lack of moisture:

"Without sufficient moisture&ndasheither in the food itself or the environment&ndashbacteria and mold may not grow and therefore, decomposition is unlikely. So if food is or becomes dry enough, it is unlikely to grow mold or bacteria or decompose," the post read in part. "Food prepared at home that is left to dehydrate could see similar results. Look closely, the burgers you are seeing are likely dried out and dehydrated, and by no means 'the same as the day they were purchased.'"

They continued by saying that burgers are made only with 100 percent USDA inspected beef (and a touch of salt and pepper!) with no preservatives or fillers. So there you have it! The next time you see these types of viral videos, know that these aged burgers and fries may not have mold, but rest assured they are just as disgusting as if they did!


McDonald’s New French Onion Shaker Fries Taste Test: Nice Or Not?

The French onion seasoning for the Shaker Fries (top up 70 cents with every Extra Value Meal for it) comes in a little sachet, similar to McDonald’s previously-launched flavours like Seaweed. The coarse powder within has the off-white colour of milk powder, and smells pretty pungent, like onions and sour cream. Ooh. We empty our box of fries into the paper bag provided, dump the sachet’s contents in, and shake it vigorously till each fry is evenly coated in seasoning and speckled with attractive green bits of dried spring onions.

Nice! Albeit in a junky way, like you’re indulging in a can of Sour Cream & Onion Pringles crisps while binge-watching past episodes of Game Of Thrones. The tang of sour cream and sharpness of onions is evident with every bite (upon closer inspection, we see a single bit of diced onion mixed in with our fries). If you’re a fan of Sour Cream & Onion potato chips, you’ll probably like this. Tasty enough eaten on its own, but pair with curry sauce if you're into living dangerously.

McDonald’s French Onion Shaker Fries is available at all outlets islandwide, and via McDelivery and GrabFood, while stocks last.


Best All-Around

Alexia Seasoned Waffle Cut Fries, $3.85

Perfectly seasoned with a nice crunch, these restaurant-quality waffle fries won our blind taste test by a landslide. The blend of sea salt, pepper, and onion is reminiscent of Arby’s Curly Fries𠅋ut, as one tester pointed out, the seasoning might actually work better on a waffle-shaped fry. “There are more crevices to hold the flavor,” they said.

WATCH: Mom vs. McDonald&aposs French Fry Hack


The Shake Shake’s cheese powder is a very light orange, almost pastel, which makes you doubt whether there’s enough flavor in that packet. It’s a fear that’s completely unfounded, but in a bad way. The fries are way too salty, perhaps due to the default salt seasoning reacting in some unpleasant way with the compounds used in the “cheese.”

Potato Corner’s cheese-flavored fries, on the other hand, are bright orange (perhaps too bright) and look more enticing than its competition. They taste more tart than McDonald’s, just salty enough to complement the well-balanced cheesy flavors.

This round goes to Potato Corner, tying the score to 2-2.


McDonald’s Testing “Shakin’ Flavor” Seasoning On Both McNuggets And Fries In Nevada

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McDonald’s Testing “Shakin’ Flavor” Seasoning On Both McNuggets And Fries In Nevada

Not content to let seasoned dust fall only on French fries in California, McDonald’s has now expanded its test of Shakin’ Flavors to its chicken McNuggets in some Nevada locations as well. Again, this just sounds like a great big salty mess waiting to get all over our hands.

BurgerBusiness.com reports that the flavor-in-a-bag idea is debuting at Northern Nevada McDonald’s locations, with the same seasoning varieties available both nuggets and fries that it had test earlier in California: zesty ranch, chipotle BBQ and garlic parmesan.

While it’s surely interesting to experiment with new flavors for some old offerings, as we’ve pointed out in the past, giving customers a packet of dry seasoning meant to be dumped in a thin, paper McDonald’s bag is only one small tear away from an annoying mess, or [gasp!] the loss of a nugget/fry.

Seasoning is free though, so at least it’d be a free annoying mess.

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McDonald's May Be Getting Into Seasoned Fries

McDonald's has kept essentially the same fries recipe for as long as anyone can remember. However, the fast food chain may finally be shaking up its fries-game with new seasoning packets.

Following a Twitter-tip-off, Foodbeast reported that McDonald's is testing seasoned fries in Stockton, Calif. Bags apparently instruct customers to pour fries and seasoning into a bag and mix the two together with some vigorous shaking to enjoy freshly flavored fries.

@GrubGrade McDonalds testing Seasoned Fries in Stockton, CA. Parm Garlic, Zesty Ranch, Spicy Buffalo varieties. pic.twitter.com/MBd7ReJeN9

&mdash Mike Du Pont (@RareBleuSkittle) May 7, 2014

"We&rsquore offering another fun and tasty way to enjoy our World Famous French fries through a test of seasoned fries in Northern California and St. Louis, beginning Friday, May 9," says McDonald's spokesperson Lisa McComb.

Varieties include Garlic Parmesan, Zesty Ranch and Spicy Buffalo.

Foodbeast reports that Burger King tries out a similar "Shake 'em up Fries" promotion in 2002. More recently, Burger King has tried to establish itself as the top dog in the world of fries, with the much-hyped Satisfries release last year.

However, McDonald's claims to draw its inspiration from somewhere other than Burger King. "The idea came from popular seasoned fries in Asia known as Shake Shake, which first debuted in 2005 in Hong Kong before spreading into other countries including China, India and Australia," says McComb.


MSG is created in the cooking process

When the McDonald's corporation made the decision to add artificial beef flavoring to their fry oil, in an effort to mimic the beef tallowy-goodness of the 1950s recipe, they created another chemical component that contributes to the addictive quality of their French fries: MSG.

The natural beef flavoring McDonald's uses in its recipe is made mostly from hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk, which for reasons better explained by hardcore food scientists, closely resembles the taste of beef. But here's the thing: When these ingredients hit the bubbling hot oil of the fryers, they start to break down, creating naturally-occurring monosodium glutamate, or MSG, in the process.

The consumption of MSG has been accused of everything from weight gain to headaches to weird allergy-like reactions, side effects that have been almost entirely debunked. The fact is, MSG isn't in and of itself a bad thing naturally-occurring glutamate (chemically identical to MSG) is in plenty of foods, including Parmesan cheese, green peas, and tomatoes, and lends a savory, umami-rich flavor to protein-packed foods. It also happens to interfere with the satiation mechanism in our brains, and has been proven in some studies to increase overall food intake in laboratory animals.

The next time you find yourself unable to stop eating McDonald's french fries, stuffing your happy tum-tum well past the point of fullness, it may not be the fries themselves it may be all of that magical, flavor-enhancing MSG.


McDonald’s french fries

  • INGREDIENTS
    5 cups frozen French-fried potatoes
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS (Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin)

Preheat oven to 450°. Place potatoes in a large bowl. Mix oil, garlic and salt toss with potatoes. Arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet.
Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once. Sprinkle with cheese toss lightly. Serve immediately. Yield: 5 servings.

McDonald’s Cheeseburger

  • INGREDIENTS
    1/4 cup steak sauce
    2 tablespoons plus 1/3 cup seasoned coating mix, divided
    1 pound ground beef
    4 hamburger buns, split
    4 lettuce leaves

DIRECTIONS
In a bowl, combine the steak sauce and 2 tablespoons of coating mix. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into four 3-1/2-in. patties. Dip both sides of patties in the remaining coating. Place on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake at 350° until a thermometer reads 160°, about 20 minutes, turning once. Serve on buns with lettuce. Yield: 4 servings.

Bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit

  • INGREDIENTS
    4 cups biscuit/baking mix
    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    1 cup finely chopped fully cooked ham
    1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper, divided
    1 cup 2% milk
    3 tablespoons butter, melted
    EGGS:
    8 large eggs
    1/2 cup 2% milk
    1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    2 tablespoons butter
    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    Optional toppings: salsa, sliced tomato, red onion and avocado

DIRECTIONS (Fay Moreland, Wichita Falls, Texas)
Preheat oven to 425°. In a large bowl, combine biscuit mix, cheese, ham and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add milk mix just until moistened.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface knead gently 8-10 times. Pat or roll dough to 1-in. thickness cut with a floured 2-1/2-in. biscuit cutter. Place 2 in. apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Brush with melted butter sprinkle with remaining pepper. Bake 12-14 minutes or until golden brown.
Meanwhile, for eggs, in a bowl, whisk eggs, milk, pepper and salt. In a large nonstick skillet, heat butter over medium heat. Pour in egg mixture cook and stir until eggs are thickened and no liquid egg remains. Stir in cheese remove from heat.
Split warm biscuits in half. Layer bottoms with egg mixture and toppings as desired. Replace tops. Yield: 10 servings.

Honey mustard sauce

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup stone-ground mustard
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup rice vinegar —

DIRECTIONS (Sharon Rehm, New Blaine, Arkansas)
In a small bowl, whisk all ingredients. Refrigerate until serving. Yield: 1 cup.


Photo credit: Christopher Jue/Stringer/Getty Images Oil Change

To make matters worse, the new oil blend began raising health concerns of its own as people became aware of the risks posed by trans fats in hydrogenated vegetable oil. So in 2002 the company changed the formula again to a new soy-corn oil, designed to cut the amount of trans fats by half while increasing the amount of healthy polyunsaturated fats. In 2007, McDonald's announced yet another new oil blend for their fries, this time a healthier trans-fat-free oil — in part a response to New York City's ban on trans fats.

So while the McDonald's french fry may be healthier than it was decades ago, we may have sacrificed a lot of taste along the way.

Of course, many of us still enjoy McDonald's french fries, perhaps just not as much as we used to. The fries still have that golden, crispy exterior and tender interior. They still offer that delicious sweet-salty combo, thanks to a spray of dextrose after they've been blanched during processing, and the salt sprinkled on after frying.

And for those wondering if we remember the original version of McDonald's fries as better tasting only because of nostalgia, author Malcolm Gladwell dispels that idea in his "Revisionist History" podcast episode, "McDonald's Broke My Heart." In the podcast, Gladwell laments the end of beef tallow use in 1990. He even goes so far as to have the country's leading food scientists recreate the original recipe for a taste test against the modern ones. It's no contest, the original recipe wins, and Gladwell concludes, "My heart is full of sadness again to think about how many millions and millions and millions of people around the world have never tasted that."

If you'd like to do a taste test yourself, you may want to try making a batch of fries with the original beef tallow recipe.

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