There isn’t anything that I despise more than a floppy, bland french fry. Well… maybe not having any french fries. But, anyway… Anyone that knows me knows that I am a french fry addict. I’m talkin’ round up all the family and friends, drag me into a surprise intervention and then ship me off to a resort center in Hawaii. That kind of addicted.
Sometimes I like to mix it up a bit and go for sweet potato fries instead of it’s less colorful cousin. The problem, though, is that they generally don’t get all that crispy. They just kind of lay there. We’ll fix that with these crispy sweet potato fries.
This is a pretty straight-forward recipe. I’m not even sure you could really call it a recipe. You just throw a few things into a baggie and then bake them. That’s right. I said bake. I know, I know… Fries are always better when you (double) fry them. This is a good alternative to frying if you are like myself and always end up with oil everywhere when you fry anything.
There are some days when you just don’t want to fool with all of that. Maybe you have new batteries in the smoke detector and don’t feel like crawling up there again to take them down. Whatever reason it may be, sometimes it’s just nice to bake instead. Oh, and some people tell me it’s healthier. I don’t know anything about all of that. Moving on…
Sweet potatoes are a whopping 75% water, so it can be difficult to get a crispy element to the fries. The secret to making sure these little orange treats get crispy and delicious is corn starch. The additional starch is required to get a crispy coating. You’ll need this even if you opt to deep-fry them instead of baking.
A trusty ol’ Ziplock bag is your best option to coat the fries. Toss the sticks into a bag with the corn starch, close it up with a bit of air left inside the bag and shake, shake, shake! Play some music. Sing a song. Dance a little jig. Just shake them up. Spread them out on a sheet pan (without parchment for an even crispier exterior) and drizzle a bit of good olive oil over. Toss them around with your hands, season to taste and bake.
The sugar in the sweet potatoes will give them a beautiful caramelization on the outside. This is what you want to see, as it will be crispy and delicious. You might be prone to pulling the fries out early when you start to see these caramelized bubbles. Don’t! Just wait. Do another jig or make a julep to calm yourself down. After a bit, flip the fries and give it a few more minutes. You’ll end up with amazingly crispy sweet potato fries.