Are you ready to fall into the new season? I’m talking about autumn foods like mood-boosting sweet potatoes. Not ready to bake a pie or scones? What about a serving of crisp fries? I’m talking homemade easy to bake, tasty sweet potato fries that’ll hit the spot and make you say, “Hello autumn equinox. Where have you been?”
As a long-time local, I must confess I didn’t always do the home cooking thing. Some time ago, I’d hit the frozen food aisle at my friendly Safeway. During autumn I’d crave tater tots. Quick and hot comfort food that took me back to childhood. One afternoon the only tots left were the sweet potato variety. I gave these babies a go. Mega mistake. The texture was mushy, not crispy. And they were oh-so bland. My tater tot fantasy fix tanked. And I wasn’t happy and left hungry.
But with time, trial and error, comes wisdom. Translation: I have mastered the art of making good for you sweet potato fries in the comfort of your kitchen. So, this week, while feeling the chill in the air, I’ve got a sweet treat for you.
Sierra-style Sweet POtato Fries
2 sweet potatoes, rinsed with water
¼ cup European butter and/or olive oil
A dash of ground pepper, garlic powder, and paprika
Parsley (fresh or dried) for garnish
Sea salt (optional)
Ketchup (for dipping)
On a cutting board, slice potatoes with a sharp knife. You can make thick wedges or thin slices like I did. Place on a non-stick cookie sheet. Drizzle with melted butter or oil. Sprinkle tops with pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Bake in a 400-degree oven for about 15 minutes. Turn fries. Bake another 15 minutes. Turn off oven and let rest for about 20 minutes. Place fries in two bowls. Sprinkle with parsley and sea salt. Drizzle or dip into ketchup. Makes 2 servings.
Tip: Allowing the potatoes to bake at a hot heat, turning, and leaving in the oven makes them oh-so crispy.
These sweet potato fries are better than tots in a bag. The flavor of spice makes them tasty and unforgettable. And yeah, you can use Russet potatoes instead. It’s all good. Or mix it up to get in the mood of changing it up to match the earthy hues of orange, green, and brown outdoors. Pair it with a cup of pumpkin spice coffee or tea and you’ll be feeling the new season with a smile.
Cal Orey, M.A. Is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, Superfoods, and Essential Oils) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.) Her website is http://www.calorey.com.