Earlier in the year, I made a conscious decision to not give my family processed foods. I’m making everything from scratch, where it can be done. And where it can’t, I’m looking for alternatives. What started off as a plan for me to lose a bit of weight and be healthier in myself, has turned into something that will benefit my whole family. No unnatural preservatives, no nasty chemicals, less fat and oils and far fewer E numbers.
Last week, Roo asked for chips for dinner, so instead of picking up a packet of frozen chips in the supermarket, I picked up a bag of sweet potatoes and made sweet potato fries for a change. Also, I am still a bit obsessed with them after my trip to The Diner the other week.
These are so easy to make and absolutely delicious. They are baked in just a tiny bit of olive oil, and cook quickly – no need for par boiling! A sprinkling of salt and pepper on the raw potatoes as they go in to oven give a lovely contrast to the sweetness of the creamy orange flesh. Finally, sweet potatoes are full of good things: folate, vitamins, beta carotene and calcium.
To make sweet potato fries, you’ll need:
Sweet potatoes, 2 for each person, or more if you are greedy, like I am.
salt and pepper
First, preheat the oven to 200°C. Peel the sweet potatoes and discard the skin. In an ideal world, I’d leave the skins on as they are tasty, but my kids will whinge if I don’t take them off, and that’s not an argument I can be bothered with at dinner time. Once peeled, cut into chips or wedges, remembering that the chunkier the chip, the longer the cooking time.
Take a baking tray or shallow roasting dish, and line with tin foil. The tin foil stops the potatoes from sticking, and also reflects some of the heat back as they are cooking. Drizzle with olive oil. You really don’t need very much, a couple of teaspoons should be plenty.
Tip the potatoes into your baking receptacle, and coat with the oil. I find the easiest way to do this is to shake them about and tip them around with your hands. This is also the messiest way, and almost certainly the most fun. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and pop in the oven, on the middle shelf.
The chips will take approximately twenty to thirty minutes to cook, and you should take them out halfway through cooking and give the tray/tin a bit of a shake to move them around.
Serve immediately, and enjoy! Yum yum!