How the Sweet Potato Fries happened…
I wanted to make something fun for Children’s Day for the blog. Also, wanted it to be a fun shape but somehow couldn’t quite zero in on the dish to prepare. After 4-5 days of pondering, I thought why not make fries; I mean there’s hardly any kid out there who doesn’t like French fries. These fries have bailed me out many times when we are out eating. If we are eating at a Shetty/ Udipi-type eating place, I don’t have to worry. I can order Dahi Wada, Aloo Paratha, or Daal Khichdi for Devansh. But if we’ve to go to a place that doesn’t have any of this on the menu, I usually have to rely on French fries. Mostly, I feed Devansh his meal before leaving home so he just sits nibbling on 5-6 fries for the entire duration we’re at the restaurant. I had some sweet potatoes lying in the house so I decided to make sweet potato fries instead of using regular fries. Boy am I glad I used them. These fries tasted so yummy; I am glad I had only two sweet potatoes so after giving Devansh his fries there weren’t too many fries left for us to devour. I mean once in a while it’s fine for Devansh to have fried stuff but not us. As it is Kalpesh and I eat out twice a week so we can really do without eating fattening stuff at home.
I saw a few videos on YouTube on how to make French fries using sweet potatoes. Some videos showed how to bake these fries, which I’m sure would be super healthy. But the thing is I have a microwave at home, which I stopped using after I got pregnant. So I haven’t used it for more than three years now. As it is I would use it to just heat food. I will give baking a shot after I buy a proper counter top oven; not keen on baking in a microwave.
So “fried” French fries it was going to be. I saw one video where I learned that the “professional” way of making fries was to fry them twice. First time they’re fried, the chef used the term “blanched in oil”, and then taken out of the oil while they’re still tender. Then, they’re fried again at a higher temperature for a longer period till they become crisp. I didn’t want to make the fries too crisp for Devansh, so I decided frying once was enough.
How did my sweet potato fries recipe turn out to be?
My fries came out crisp but not too crisp, just how I wanted. I fried the unevenly shaped pieces first just in case I needed to make any corrections. They turned out just fine. I gave this first batch to Devansh so he would let Kalpesh shoot the photo in peace. Devansh loved the fries and as I mentioned above, so did we. If you slice the sweet potatoes thin enough they come out real crisp, and their sweetness really lends a delightful flavor to the fries. I added ketchup on top of the circular fries in the center just for presentation.
Devansh had the fries without the ketchup. I arranged the fries in the shape of the Sun. At least I thought I did, because when I said Sun, my son said “Nahi…star”…well Sun too is a star so I guess I won’t let my ego get too bruised. 😉 If you’ve noticed, off late I’ve started posting a different photo on my Facebook page. Kalpesh always wanted to put some arty-type photo with some props like the ingredients, toys, flowers etc etc…whereas I felt that those take away the focus from the actual food. So we’ve reached a compromise. On the blog, I’ll post the pic of the food and on the Facebook page, I’ll post a pic of Kalpesh’s choice. 🙂
To come back to our sweet potato fries, I’ll say toddlers and kids will definitely love these fries. Sweet potatoes are healthier than potatoes, and these fries are pretty simple to make and don’t take too much of your time. So any time you want to make a quick, chatpata snack for your kiddo, give these fries a try. You can make them slightly less crispy for younger toddlers who might not want to chew crisp fries.
Sweet Potato Fries Recipe
- 1-2 sweet potatoes
- oil for frying
- salt to taste
- Cut sweet potatoes in thin strips. If they're not cut in long, thin strips then they're not really "French" fries. But since I wanted to arrange the fries in the shape of the sun, I cut some in circular shapes as well.
- Heat oil in a kadai (wok) on medium-high heat. I used an iron kadai and filled it halfway with oil.
- To test whether the temperature of the oil is right for frying, place a wooden spatula or spoon in the oil. Bubbles should form and float up towards the surface.
- Fry for 3-4 minutes, you'll be able to tell when to take them out by their color—not too white, not too brown.
- Remove the fries from oil and place them on paper tissues so that excess oil is absorbed, and then sprinkle some salt on them.
- If you are making these fries for older kids, you can also sprinkle some pepper powder.
- You can serve with tomato ketchup or salsa sauce. Although, they taste great even without any accompaniment.