Crispy Sweet Potato Fries

I love sweet potato fries.  I don’t eat out much, well hardly at all really, and only at a handful of local restaurants.  One of my favorite places to eat used to be California Cafe in Denver because they had a lovely gluten-free menu, used local and seasonal ingredients and had the best fresh, hand cut sweet potato fries, ever.  It was a sad day for me when they closed!  I’ve tried many different methods of cooking, frying and baking sweet potatoes to recreate the light crispy texture of those wonderful fries at California Cafe but never could get it just right…until now.  Double frying is definitely the secret to getting a crispy fry that is still light and fluffy on the inside.  This is really a process but totally worth it.  If you don’t have the time or the patience for frying I also have perfected the oven-baking method too and I have included the instructions for that as well!

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. arrowroot powder
  • coconut oil, for frying or baking
  • sea salt, for sprinkling
  • Ketchup and sour cream, for serving

Directions

Peel and rinse the sweet potatoes. Cut each potato lengthwise into 4 or 5 pieces, then cut each piece into sticks. The thinner these are, the crispier they will be. Place the fries in a large bowl. Cover with cold water, then allow them to soak 2 or 3 hours (or you can stick them in the fridge and let them soak overnight).

When you’re ready to make the fries, drain the water and lay the potatoes on 2 baking sheets lined with paper towels. Blot with paper towels to dry.  Place the patted dry sweet potatoes into a dry bowl and sprinkle with the arrowroot powder and toss the potatoes to coat evenly.

For Frying:

Heat a few inches of coconut oil to 300° F in a heavy pot. In 3 or 4 batches, fry the potatoes about 4 to 5 minutes per batch, or until soft. They should not be brown at all at this point-you just want to start the cooking process. Remove each batch and drain them on new, dry paper towels or a brown paper bag.

Once all the potatoes have been fried at 300 degrees F, turn up the heat until the oil temperature reaches 400 degrees F. When the oil is hot, start frying the potatoes in batches again, cooking until golden and crisp. Remove from the oil and drain on fresh paper towels or a fresh brown paper bag. Sprinkle the fries with sea salt and serve with the ketchup and sour cream for dipping.

Baked Sweet Potato Fries

For Baking:

Preheat the oven to 425° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place the patted dry sweet potatoes into a dry bowl and sprinkle with the arrowroot powder and toss the potatoes to coat evenly.  Once the potatoes are coated with the arrowroot, drizzle with 2 Tbsp. of melted coconut oil again tossing to coat evenly, sprinkle with sea salt.  Spread the sweet potatoes onto the prepared baking sheet in a single layer making sure not to overcrowd, use two baking sheets if necessary.  Bake for 45-50 minutes, turning occasionally, until the sweet potatoes are crispy and browned.  Let cool on the pan for a few minutes before serving.

This recipe is shared at:

Made From Scratch Monday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Tempt My Tummy Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Gluten-Free Wednesday, Whole Food Wednesday, Allergy-Free Wednesday, Fight Back Friday, Gluten-Free Fridays, Foodie Friends Friday

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Crispy Delicata Squash Fries

Crispy Delicata Squash Fries…so tasty.

Winter squash seem to be EVERYWHERE these days and I couldn’t be happier!  This is a super easy and quick recipe that makes a comforting side dish for any meal…I love to roast pretty much any squash but I especially like the Delicata since the skin is edible, no peeling necessary!!!

Delicata Squash Fries

2 Delicata Squash

2 Tbsp. coconut oil

salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.  Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.  With a sharp knife cut squash in half and remove the seeds.  Slice the squash into 1/4″ pieces.

Seeded and sliced delicata squash

Place squash in a large mixing bowl and toss with coconut oil and salt and pepper to coat.

Place coated squash on the parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake for 30 minutes, turning all the squash halfway through baking.  Once the squash is browned and crispy, remove from oven and sprinkle with sea salt.  Serve immediately.

Hot out of the oven.

This recipe is shared at:

Tempt My Tummy Tuesdays, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Whole Foods Wednesday, Fill Those Jars Fridays, Allergy Free Wednesday, Fight Back Friday, Gluten-Free MondayGluten-Free Wednesdays , Gluten Free Fridays

Bacon Wrapped Sweet Potato Bites…Oh, Yes I Did!

Bacon Wrapped Sweet Potatoes…Could there be anything better?

Bacon.

That is all.

Really, does anything more need to be said?  Seems like everything just tastes better wrapped in bacon…dates, jalapenos, asparagus, scallops, filet Mignon…I’ve tried them all, why not sweet potatoes?  This lovely little bit of heaven did not disappoint!  Great as an appetizer, side dish or even a light meal with a salad!

Bacon Wrapped Sweet Potatoes

1 Large sweet potato, peeled

4-6 slices sugar-free bacon

olive oil

chili powder

toothpicks

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a rimmed baking pan with foil or parchment paper.  Cut the sweet potato into 1″ chunks.  Slice the bacon in half crosswise and then lengthwise to yield 16-24 strips, use enough bacon to have one strip per sweet potato chunk.  Wrap each sweet potato chunk with a strip of bacon and secure with a tooth pick, place on baking pan.

Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with chili powder.

Bake for 20 minutes, remove from the oven and flip over.

Place back in the oven for an additional 20-25 minutes, until the bacon is crispy and sweet potatoes are browned.

Remove to paper towel lined plate until ready for serving.  These are best served warm with sour cream (if you eat dairy), homemade ranch or guacamole for dipping.

This recipe is shared at:

Gluten-Free Wednesdays, Whole Foods Wednesdays, Beyond the Peel, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Fat Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday, Bizzy Bakes, Tastetastic Thursday, Fight Back Friday, Fresh Bites Friday

Spicy Turnip Fries & Fresh Pickle Relish

Spicy Turnip Fries

Turnips are root vegetables that are similar in texture to a white potato so they are a great substitution in most recipes calling for a starchy white potato.  A white-fleshed turnip has a white skin with a purple-tinged top.  A rutabaga, which is sometimes called a yellow-turnip is actually a relative of the turnip with similar taste and texture to the white fleshed ones.  Small, young turnips have a delicate, slightly sweet taste.  Fresh turnips are available year-round, with the peak season from October through March.

This recipe is an oldie but goodie…it’s a great accompaniment to any roasted or grilled meat, especially burgers or Italian sausage (pictured above).  I love the spiciness of chili powder but you could use any spice you like or even just salt and pepper.

Spicy Turnip Fries (serves 2)

2 turnips (about 1 pound), peeled

2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  • Slice the peeled turnips into strips (like french fries).
  • Toss sliced turnips with coconut oil, chili powder and salt.
  • Place turnips on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer.
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes, turning once halfway through baking, until evenly browned.
  • Serve hot from the oven.

Fresh Pickle Relish

This recipe is a fresh and healthy alternative to store-bought pickle relish which is usually loaded with sugar and preservatives.  You can adapt it to be a dill pickle relish or add a touch of stevia for a sweet pickle relish…both are super tasty!

Fresh Pickle Relish (serves 2, generously)

1/2 cup finely chopped bell pepper (red, green or yellow or combination)

1 medium tomato, finely chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped red onion

1/4 cup finely chopped dill pickle (I use Bubbies)

1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar

1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

10 drops liquid stevia (optional for a sweet pickle relish)

In a small bowl, combine chopped pepper, tomato, onion, pickle, vinegar and salt and mix well.  Set aside for at least 20 minutes to let flavors combine.  Enjoy on grilled brats and burgers!

This recipe is shared at:

Wellness Weekend , Fight Back Friday, Fat Tuesday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Bacon Wrapped Asparagus

Easy, Elegant and Healthy.

Asparagus.  Bacon.  Need I say more?

Bacon Wrapped Asparagus:

1 1/2 pounds asparagus (24-32 stalks), ends trimmed

4 slices organic uncured bacon, prosciutto or pancetta

olive oil

salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Trim stalky ends off the asparagus, wash and pat dry.  Lightly coat asparagus in olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Wrap 6 – 8 stalks of asparagus with one slice of bacon and place bundle on a broiler or sheet pan, repeat with remaining asparagus and bacon.  Bake for 12-14 minutes, turning bundles once halfway through.  Bacon should be crisp and asparagus tender.

***Asparagus can also be cooked on a hot grill…place bundles directly on grill and cover, cook 10-12 minutes.

***If your asparagus bundles won’t hold together secure bacon with a toothpick or kitchen twine.

I used an oven proof pan this time...worked beautifully.

This recipe is shared at:

Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Tasty Tuesday & Fat Tuesday

Gluten Free Wednesdays

Fight Back Friday

Quick and Easy Squash Latkes

Squash Latkes

Traditionally, a latke is a potato pancake. Most people think of the potato pancake as a Jewish dish eaten during Hanukkah, but potato pancakes of some sort exist in potato-eating cultures around the world.

My first experience with a potato pancake was at a block party in Allen, Texas…all my neighbors got together one fall evening with a few coolers of beer, several bags of potatoes, a tub of Crisco and all our Coleman camping stoves lined up in the cul-de-sac…a few hours later (and a couple refills of the beer coolers!) I had my first potato pancake.  I couldn’t imagine how I had gotten into my early twenties living in the south and never had one of these little bites of heaven, crispy outside, fluffy & salty inside, doused in ketchup…oh my I was hooked!  Needless to say those potato pancakes were terribly unhealthy and were full of processed “white” food and hydrogenated oil…AND to this very day (about 15 years later) there is still massive Crisco oil stains on the driveways where we fried them!!!!!

Fast forward to the present day into my gluten-free, grain-free, unprocessed and refined sugar-free lifestyle…I still love to re-create the tastes and textures of the foods I loved back then.  For years I have been making a wonderful sweet potato latke but lately have been experimenting using less starchy vegetables with really great results.  My favorites are these summer squash and zucchini latkes followed closely by a jicama and carrot combination.  Once again, this recipe is easily adaptable with just about any vegetable, the key is to squeeze as much moisture out of the grated vegetables you are using so the latkes don’t get mushy.

I like them with a dollop of fresh sour cream…

Summer Squash and Zucchini Latkes (yields 8 latkes)

1 lb summer squash, grated

1 lb zucchini, grated

2 green onions, sliced

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1/4 cup coconut oil, avocado oil or lard (or your favorite high heat oil)

celtic sea salt

black pepper

1 tsp. crushed red pepper

sour cream or creme fraiche (optional for garnish)

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Grate squash and zucchini on a box grater or in a food processor and place in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle a generous amount of salt over the squash and mix together, let sit in the bowl for about 15 minutes.  Scoop the squash mixture into a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out all the excess moisture (this is the most important step of the process, so don’t skip it!).  Place the drained squash back into the bowl, add green onion, beaten eggs, salt and pepper to your taste and crushed red pepper, thoroughly combine.  Drop about 1/4 cup of the squash mixture into the hot oil and slightly press down with a spatula, fry until slightly browned and crispy on each side, usually about 5 minutes per side.  Remove from oil and drain on paper towels.  Serve warm or at room temperature with a dollop of fresh sour cream.

Super crispy on the outside, moist but not mushy on the inside.

Recipe tips/variations:

  • Squeeze as much moisture out as you can!
  • If the mixture still feels too wet add tablespoon of almond, coconut or quinoa flour
  • For vegan option, omit the eggs and add 1/4 cup flour

Vegetables I like to use:

Jicama and carrot

Butternut squash

Sweet potato and red onion

This recipe is shared at:

Fight Back Fridays & Fresh Bites Friday

Fat Tuesday & Slightly Indulgent Tuesday

Gluten Free Wednesdays

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