Sweet Potato Fries

I am super slow in posting.  I have been busy being putting my feet up to rest from twisting my ankle playing volleyball.  Sadly it was not during some game winning play that makes for a great story or made the pain worth it.  I simply landed wrong after hitting the ball in the net.  At least we did end up winning the game so it wasn’t totally worthless.

I have been wanting to continue highlighting all the great foods in the 150 Top Healthiest Foods that I read on vacation.  The sweet potato is one of my favorite foods and main reason I look forward to fall.  Thanks to Costco though I can eat them pretty much year-round.

So what makes them so good for us?  One has over 700% of our daily recommended value for Vitamin A.  700%!!!  Crazy. Vitamin A promotes eyesight and helps us see in the dark; aids in the differentiation of cells of the skin (lining the outside of the body) and mucous membranes (linings inside of the body); helps the body fight off infection and sustain the immune system; and, supports growth and remodeling of bone. In addition, dietary vitamin A, in the form of beta carotene (an antioxidant), may help reduce your risk for certain cancers.

Then there are the 4 grams of protein (who knew), the 7 grams of fiber, and the 65% of daily Vitamin C.  Failing to get enough vitamin C causes inflammation of the gums, scaly skin, nosebleed, painful joints and other problems associated with scurvy, and we all know what failure to get enough fiber can lead to….

One of our favorite ways to cook them is to make an oven baked fry.  I have been trying for years to figure out how to get them crispier without sacrificing health, when I came across a trick in Clean Eating that I finally had time to try.  I was disappointed to find the results not any crispier than the quicker, more traditional method.  But perhaps it was user error, so feel free to try either and let me know if you get that crispiness.  Or if you have an even better method that works, please let me know!!!

Crispy Baked Sweet Potato Fries 

Ingredients

For Fries
2 medium sweet potatoes or yams
1 egg white
sea salt to taste
herbs or spices to taste (I used smoked paprika but garlic and cilantro or basil would be delicious) \

Directions

1. Peel the potatoes and cut into strips or wedges with even thickness (you choose on how thick you want, just make sure the thickness is the same to ensure even cooking). Soak in a bowl of cold water for 30 minutes to allow all starch to be removed. Drain and pat completely dry (you don’t want excess moisture!!). Meanwhile prepare dipping sauce (if using). In a small bowl, add all ingredients and set in fridge for flavors to meld.
2. Preheat oven to 425 F (convection is best*). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. In a large bowl, add egg white and beat until slightly foamy. Add potatoes, salt and choice of herbs/spices to taste. Toss to coat.
4. Spread potato slices onto baking sheet and make sure they do not overlap and are not crowded or touching.
5. Bake for 15 minutes. Take out  and flip the fries over and return to oven for another 15 minutes or until cooked through. The thinner the fry, the shorter the time, so keep an eye on them! Reduce heat to 200F and let the fries dry for another 15-20 minutes.

*If you do not have a convection oven, occasionally vent the oven the allow the steam to escape. This will help crisp up the fries more.