This time of year my mom and I love to go to Larry’s Produce to get all our pumpkins for October & November, and of course we like to stop in whenever we can to pick up fresh fruits and veggies. The other day when we went, we picked up a handful of sweet potatoes, just because.
For those of you unfamiliar with Larry’s Produce – it’s this really awesome family-run produce stand that has fresh fruits and veggies, primarily grown local or from elsewhere in California. Some of the items that are grown on the premises, you can even pick yourself! They also have an amazing selection of pumpkins during this time of year. If you’re ever in the area, be sure to check them out!
Anyway, where was I, yes sweet potatoes. So typically when we get sweet potatoes, we opt to either make them into mashed sweet potatoes (usually as a topping for shepherd’s pie – recipe to come!) or just bake them in the oven, and then top with savory (garlic salt, pepper, butter) or sweet (brown sugar, butter, cinnamon) toppings. But last night I was wanting to try something new, and that’s how these baked sweet potato chili fries came about.
If you haven’t already guessed, I’ve been on a bit of an oven-roasting kick lately – so naturally, these fries are oven-roasted. They’re made crispy with a little addition of cornstarch to the mixture of spices – similar to my Oven Baked Spicy Cheese Fries.
Mmm…perfect combo of spicy and sweet, and crispy yet soft on the inside.
Sweet Potato Chili Fries
Recipe by Me!
4 medium sized sweet potatoes, washed, peeled, and sliced into strips
3 Tablespoons cornstarch
3 Tablespoons chili powder
3 Tablespoons cayenne
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 Tablespoon garlic salt
3 – 4 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons black pepper
Note: For a less intense spice – reduce chili powder and cayenne to 1 1/2 Tablespoons each.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil, and spray with cooking spray or drizzle lightly with olive oil. Mix together cornstarch, chili powder, cayenne, paprika, cumin, taco seasoning, mustard powder, black pepper, and garlic salt. Set aside.
Wash, peel, and cut your sweet potatoes into strips (some call these matchstick – you can really cut them into whatever shape you would like, I just prefer the long skinny look for sweet potato fries). In a large bowl, toss the sweet potatoes with the olive oil. Sprinkle the cornstarch-spice mixture over the sweet potatoes. Toss until the sweet potatoes are completely coated.
Arrange the potatoes on the baking sheet in a single layer (very important! If they overlap, they will begin to steam rather than roast, resulting in less crispy fries). Bake for 35 to 40 minutes on the center rack (you may need to adjust the time based on your type of oven – I would recommend checking the crispness of the fries at 35 minutes, then decide if you would like to leave them longer.) Turn them at least once, and also rotate the baking sheet.
Allow to cool for 5 minutes, mostly so you don’t burn the inside of your mouth when you start to eat them by the handfuls. Enjoy!
Bonus Recipe! I was feeling creative while the fries baked so I decided to try to make a balsamic ranch dressing to dip the fries in – whether or not that is a real thing, I have no idea but it sounded good at the time and it came out tasty so hey, why not!
Creamy Balsamic Ranch
Recipe by me!
4 Tablespoons Sour Cream (or Plain Greek Yogurt)
2 Tablespoons Mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Garlic Salt
1 Tablespoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1/2 teaspoon Mustard Powder
1 teaspoon Milk (I like 2%)
Put all the ingredients in a bowl or tall glass, and whisk together. You may want to add more or less of the garlic salt and pepper, depending on how you like your ranch. This proportion yields a very tangy, creamy, and just slightly salty dressing.