Savory Sweet Potato Fries
Oh, Gourmet magazine, what will we do when we need something simple and savory and lipsmacking? Who else will understand that sweet potatoes were not invented to be smothered in marshmallows? Who else will have the brilliant derring-do to slice a sweet potato like a steak fry and season it with fennel? [Sigh]
I’ll have to settle for being grateful that the recipe archive lives on, as it helps me make up for all the yearstoo many yearswhen sweet potatoes and I weren’t friends.
Some years ago, my friend, Tom, talked me into trying the sweet potato fries that were a specialty of the dive where we sometimes ate lunch. I hadn’t had sweet-potato-anything in yearsdecadesscarred as I was as a child by something yammy (candied yams, I suspect). I wasn’t optimistic about the fry treatment, and I was pretty certain I was wasting an opportunity to enjoy a plate of regular ole dive fries, but, I powered on. I even agreed to his insistence on ordering some sour cream on the side. Sweet potatoes? Fried? With sour cream?
I had to be crazy.
I’m pretty sure Tom doesn’t read this blog, which is fortunate for me, because then he would find out just how indebted I am to him for opening my eyes to the beauty of the fried sweet potatodipped in sour cream and he would probably hold it over my head for an indefinite period of time.
I don’t know how the dive who served me those fries that day prepared them, but these baked versions are yummy-yum-yummy. Tender and perfectly seasoned, they’ll make a believer out of the staunchest sweet potato detractor.
Roasted Spicy Sweet Potatoes
|Gourmet, January 2002|
|1/2||teaspoon||dried hot red pepper flakes|
|2||lbs.||medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed (peeled or not; it’s up to you)|
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Coarsely grind coriander, fennel, oregano, and red pepper flakes in an electric coffee/spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle. Stir together spices and salt.
Cut potatoes lengthwise into 1-inch wedges.
Toss wedges with oil and spices in a large roasting pan and roast in middle of oven 20 minutes. Turn wedges over with a spatula and roast until tender and slightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes more.
SoupAddict’s notes: I would recommend slicing the potatoes into 1/2″ thick wedges. After they were finished roasting, I also stuck them under the broiler for several minutes to dry them out a bit. One treatment I might try next time is to simply spray the wedges with spray oil, instead of using vegetable oil, and then sprinkle on the spices.