Undoubtedly the best thing to come out of my recent flirtations with the Banting lifestyle is a renewed love affair with sweet potatoes.
I’ve always been fond of sweet potatoes, but they have never really been a major part of my diet. These days, however, I can’t seem to live without them. Whilst still a carbohydrate, luckily sweet potato finds itself on the Banting Orange List, making it the “occasional carb” of choice for many of us on LCHF diets. Provided they are eaten in moderation, this tuberous gem is nutritious, tasty and most importantly, relatively guilt-free. Chock full of goodness, sweet potatoes are high in Vitamins A, B6 and C, beta-carotene, potassium, antioxidants and contain enough dietary fibre to account for 16% of your RDA. That’s a lot of ‘goodness’ packed into a humble root vegetable!
The nutritional value of sweet potatoes aside, what ultimately makes them so popular is their versatility; they can be used to make soup, mashed, microwaved, oven-roasted, gratinéed or glazed, although the latter is most definitely not for those of us avoiding sugar! Currently, however, my favourite way of preparing sweet potatoes is to use them to make skinny fries.
Cooked in a hot oven, skinny sweet potato fries are just the absolute bomb. Easy to make, healthy and incredibly tasty, these skinny fries are downright irresistible, making them almost TOO good! Personally, I prefer skinny fries over making sweet potato wedges as their ‘skinniness’ encourages a light singeing of the edges, resulting in a ‘burnt’ bitterness that perfectly plays against the inherent sweetness and earthy tones of the vegetable.
Trust me, wholesome has never tasted this good.
Skinny Sweet Potato Fries: Serves 2 as a side dish
- 2 medium-sized sweet potatoes (I use the red skin, white flesh variety)
- Cooking oil (use whatever type your diet permits, I just use olive oil)
- Salt (I use Applewood Smoked Gourmet Salt by eat.art)
- Freshly ground black Peppercorns
- Pre-heat your oven to 220ºC
- Wash the sweet potatoes, but don’t peel them
- Using a large, sharp knife, cut the tips of the sweet potato off, then cut them in half lengthwise. Continue to cut them lengthwise until you have strips that are between 5 and 10mm thick
- Drizzle with your preferred oil and then season with salt & pepper. With your hands, lightly toss the fries to make sure that they are all covered in the oil
- Spread the fries on a flat baking tray and place on the top rack of the pre-heated oven
- Bake for 20 minutes, giving the fries a good shake just after midway
- Once the fries are soft, turn on the oven’s grill/broiler to high and cook for another couple of minutes. Be careful not to burn the fries, you just want to scorch them slightly. There is a fine line between charred and cremated – so keep an eye on them!
- Place the cooked fries on some adsorbent kitchen paper to drain momentarily and then serve immediately