Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Coconut Oil-Sriracha Aioli
Happy Fry-day, friends!!
(I’m so sorry. I had to.)
There’s a lot to discuss regarding the origin of these addictive sweet potato fries and their magical dipping sauce, so let’s get right to it.
The recipe is ripped from the pages of Phoebe Lapine’s badass new book, The Wellness Project: How I Learned to Do right by My Body, Without Giving Up My Life, which I’ve been pouring over since its release earlier this week. If you hang out here on the reg, you’re probably familiar with Phoebe, as she’s been my best weird blog lady friend for years. Whenever people ask for healthy/delicious/gluten-free food blog recs, I always scream, “What, I’m not enough for you?!! Feed Me Phoebe!!” before they’ve even finished the question. And I can say with 100% certainty that no one has ever been disappointed.
Note to self: Start referral program for blog ladies and eye masks, stat.
Not only do I respect Phoebe endlessly as a chef, I’m also in awe of her unique and refreshing approach to wellness. Long story short, Phoebe was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (a chronic autoimmune disease) in her early twenties, which stranded her on the shittier side of the health spectrum for most of said decade. Fed up with not feeling “well,” she finally decided to grab her health by the balls and change her lifestyle.
How could she embrace “wellness” without becoming Gwyneth a recluse? Given the somewhat terrifying nature of the wellness world these days, the path to health often seems overwhelming at best. Instagram alone would have you believe that to be truly “well,” you must live on kale, Vital Proteins collagen peptides, and purified water, preferably enhanced with multiple trendy/expensive “potions” and “elixers”. Daily yoga, meditation, and cardio are crucial, as is gratitude journaling, sleeping 9 hours a night, and making sure that you use exclusively non-toxic cleaning and beauty products. Should you have any free time, meet up with friends for cupping or acupuncture. Maybe get wild and go crystal shopping before comparing your healthy lifestyles over kombucha! Don’t drink booze or coffee, and never, EVER eat refined sugar. #wellness #healthylifestyle #FML
Instead of tumbling down the wellness rabbit hole and completely overhauling her life, Phoebe decided to “take the scenic route up health mountain” and devised a more realistic, systematic approach to feeling good. For one full year, she made a single lifestyle change each month, i.e. adopting an anti-inflammatory diet, upgrading her hydration and fitness habits, detoxing her product pantry, and more. Phoebe chronicles this journey in The Wellness Project, honestly (and hilariously) sharing what worked, what didn’t, and how she was able to strike the balance between health and hedonism. She manages to impart so much knowledge in an entertaining, non-preachy way, and you’ll come away with so many realistic tips for how to live your best life. I love it. You should get it. Trust.
The Wellness Project is not a cookbook, BUT it does contain 22 killer inflammation-fighting recipes for clearer skin (whoop), better digestion, and a thriving thyroid, and I’ve been happily working my way through them. Naturally, I started with the Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Coconut Oil-Sriracha Aioli, and they were ridiculously delicious.
Baked sweet potato fries can be tricky, as they have a tendency to soften and caramelize in the oven instead of crisping up like their deep-fried counterparts, but these ones avoid that sad fate. Thanks to their matchstick cut and the perfect amount of starch, they get nice and crispy like a restaurant fry. And the dipping sauce! Dear GOD.
Let me be very clear on something: I have always despised mayonnaise, so I was understandably skeptical about/scared by this aioli (which is just a fancy term for flavored mayo). However, given my love of Sriracha and coconut oil, I decided to test my devil’s condiment boundaries and give Phoebe’s heart-healthy version a chance. It was definitely the right call, since the slightly sweet and spicy condiment was kinda life-changing, and I want to put it on sandwiches, toast, vegetables, and everything else in my fridge.
DO I LIKE MAYO NOW??! WHAT IS HAPPENING?!!
Anyhoo, these fries are an excellent addition to any meal, and they couldn’t be easier. If you’re not into sweet potatoes, feel free to use regular potatoes, and in a pinch you can make the aioli with store-bought mayo (eek). Just mix 1/3 cup mayo with the sriracha, garlic, and lime juice.
Happy weekend, peeps! May it be filled with equal parts health and hedonism.
p.s. I also love Phoebe’s Raw Gingerbread Cookie Beauty Balls, so if you get the book, make hem ASAP.
Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Coconut Oil-Sriracha Aioli: (Serves 2-4)
2 medium sweet potatoes (about 1 pound), scrubbed
2 tablespoons olive oil or melted coconut oil
2 teaspoons potato, corn, or arrowroot starch
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
For the aioli:
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon sriracha
1 small garlic clove, minced or grated
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled slightly
½ teaspoon sea salt
Preparing your Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Coconut Oil-Sriracha Aioli:
-Position the racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
-Using a sharp chef’s knife, cut the top and bottom off the sweet potatoes and stand them on one of the flat sides. Cut each into thin planks, ¼-inch thick, and then into matchsticks.
-Add the potatoes to a large mixing bowl and toss with the olive oil. Sprinkle with the starch, salt, and paprika, and toss until well coated.
-Divide the fries among the prepared baking sheets and arrange in an even layer, making sure there’s space between each fry.
-Bake for 20 minutes, swapping the baking sheets from top to bottom halfway through, until nicely browned (but not blackened at the tips). Remove from the oven and toss the potatoes to redistribute. Return to the oven for about 5 minutes until crispy. Allow to cool for a few minutes on the pan before transferring to a serving platter or parchment paper cone.
-While the fries are baking, make the aioli. In a small mixing bowl or bowl of a food processor, whisk or pulse the egg yolks, mustard, lime juice, sriracha, and garlic until smooth.
-Working slowly, add 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and whisk or pulse until incorporated. Repeat with 2 additional teaspoons. Once the oil is emulsifying easily, slowly drizzle in the remaining olive oil, follwed by the coconut oil, whisking or ulsing throughout until thick. Season with the salt.
-Serve the hot fries alongside the coconut oil-sriracha aioli for dipping.
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