Tefal Actifry 

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Can you imagine frying chips in less than a teaspoon of oil and getting lovely crisp chips? Well with the Tefal Actifry you can and you do.

Tefal Actifry fat fryer

I was to say the least sceptical deep fried chips to be crispy require double frying and that requires them to be cooked at a lower temperature and then recooked at a higher temperature to crisp them.

So following the instructions I picked a medium sized potato which if it is 250 grams is stated to be a single portion. I weighed a few and found one at 260 grams. 13x13mm and up to 9cm long. I know we have been metric for umpty six years but to me that is still ½inch.

So without peeling (lets be healthy) and almost all supermarket potatoes are pre washed I cut the desired sizes, next place them in the Teflon coated container and add ¼ spoon of oil. Yes no misprint ¼ spoon of oil dribbling it over all the chips. At this point I am certain this is not going to work, how can you get great chips with little oil?

Reading the manual this operation will take just over twenty minutes, press the on button and immediately the central paddle starts to rotate this turns the chips while circulating them round the container. Through the Perspex lid I can feel heat and the chips continue to turn, after around ten minutes I can see they are all getting a sheen, after fifteen minutes they look done but I leave the process to continue. Now we are in the final minute and the clock instead of displaying minutes left displays seconds, now is rings out and to stop it you must press the button or it keeps ringing, you also need to switch it off as otherwise it will continue cooking.

I admit the taste was great and the chips were not only cooked but crisp and to my surprise there were even tiny drops of oil in the base of the container. Since then I have tried frozen chips these worked as well. You can aso cook various other items such as vegetables, meat, poultry, fish and even deserts.

The actual container is 25cm across, this sits in another container and then there is the

Outer case in all it's 30cm across. However at one end is the timing mechanism and the motor etc and this gives a 12x14cm bump at the back end, with the lid down the total height of the whole unit is 19cm. So you want to know how large the spoon is, it has a top marking of 1.4cl so I would say ¼ spoon is about a teaspoon.

The Actifry comes with a ten page well illustrated instruction book, this includes two pages with suggested cooking times for a whole range of things other than potatoes. It also suggests the quantities of the item and if it needs oil then how much.

The largest amount of oil anywhere is one spoonful and that is enough for a kilo of chips. If you prefer frozen chips these need no oil at all. The longest cooking time is for either a kilo of chips or 500grams of Chilli Con Carne where you use fresh uncooked mince and this is only 40 minutes.

Over the past few weeks I have felt it's my duty to try a whole raft of items that I would never think of cooking in a 'chip pan' such as lamb chop, monkfish apples and even bananas. They all work, there is also a separate 68 page receipt book in full colour and I have tried some of these as well.

All in all there is only one drawback to the Tefal Actifry for anyone who likes fried food, it's the price. But as you use so little - or no - oil it's close to healthy. I used to hate unpealed potatoes now when I chip them and cook them in the Actifry they are great and of course crispy.

Doing my Internet searches found the Tefal Actifry at a best price of £130 including delivery from both Amazon and John Lewis.

Doing my Internet searches found the Tefal Actifry at a best price of €199 including delivery from the first link below.

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Comment by robbie, Aug 13, 2010 14:38

I had a actifry for just over a year it then burnt out, this is a well known fault as shown on bbc watchdog. I pointed this out to tefal and they sent me a free replacement, so far a year later it is still working. Another fault I have had, is that sometimes chips get wedged between the rotater blade and the body, causing the machine to start clicking and fail to rotate, which must cause the machine to overheat if the stuck chips are not cleared, so the actify cannot left unattended, I wonder if anybody else has had this happen? I think the chips are better than oven chips but not quite as good tasting as deep fried

Comment by Denarius, Aug 6, 2010 21:51

I too have been a great fan until ours decided to stop turning. Murphys law it is 1 month out of warranty. The thing stops turning even with just a dozen chips in it, or 3 - 4 sausages. Used to handle heaps more than that. I've checked the web re this fault and it seems to be quite common. I contacted Tefal and their response was 'sorry, it's out of warranty'. We didn't use ours that much 1 - 2 times a fortnight so I would have expected to last longer than it did. Very dissappointed with Tefal and intend to take it further under Sale of Goods Act as it should be able to work more than 30 - 40 times.  :0(

Comment by Alan Wood, Nov 15, 2009 11:49

Make sure you buy a replacement motor if you plan to use this more than once a week

Comment by lisa, Mar 15, 2009 1:06

ive got a actifry, iwas very pleased with it, untill the top broke, in less than a month. And have been told that the it is not coverd by the guarante, and will cost 50 euros for anew top. I think tha in only one month, this not right. Ive been asking around and this is has happend to quite a few, people some are lucky and they change the top free. but the same thing happens again because it most be fault in the fabric.

Comment by terry nagel, Aug 20, 2008 21:00

The Tefal Actifry ia an excellent product and it does everything claimed by the manufacturer. However, it cannot be stressed enough, it is all down to the quality of the potato. When we first used the 'Actifry' we were a little disappointed in the taste of the chips but we were using British white potatoes purchased from our local supermarket and not the potatoes recommended by Tefal which are Maris Piper, King Edward and I believe Sante potatoes. The next day we sourced some Maris Piper potatoes from the local market (£1 for 5lb)and later that day we cooked another batch of chips following the instructions to the letter (washing the cut chips really well and drying them with a clean dry tea towel and brushing the spoonful of oil onto the chips - they cooked to absolute perfection in 25 minutes. We also cooked some pork chops in 20 minutes and they were also cooked to perfection. As mentioned, it is all down to the quality of the potato.

Comment by petew, Jul 5, 2008 9:11


Comment by paul_smart, June 29, 2008 10:06

Is there not an Amazon in Spain?

Comment by Josie, June 29, 2008 8:34

Help!! I would love to buy the Actifry but Amazon will not ship to me in Madeira and Lakeland charge the earth

Comment by chrisjwilkinson, May 25, 2008 16:21

Just a shame about the price.
Ah well, when I win the lottery I won't have to worry about such things!

Comment by paul_smart, May 6, 2008 16:17

If it had been cheaper like maybe £80 then I would have recomended it for a 5x5 award.

Comment by clemenzina, May 6, 2008 15:41

I'm very disappointed that you've given the Actifry a good review - cos I simply CANNOT afford it!  Then there's finding worktop space for it too... but thanks anyway :)

Comment by M Moffatt, May 4, 2008 22:56

The Actifry makes very good chips,just make sure it is cleaned
well every time it is used,otherwise it will get stained.
You cant put an abrasive on the perspex lid because it will
scratch.Wash with soapy water straight after use.

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