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Sea Salt and Rosemary Sweet Potato Chips

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

When my kids were quite young I used to make these chips in a (perhaps misguided) attempt to get them to try new vegetables. Of course they devoured them; what’s not to love about fried sweet potatoes? The seasoned salt dresses them up just a bit.

NotesThe chips may can be fried and salted several hours in advance and kept, uncovered, at room temperature.

Makes8 to 10 servings

Cooking Methodfrying

CostInexpensive

Total Timeunder 30 minutes

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionCocktail Party, Family Get-together, game day

Recipe Coursehors d'oeuvre, snack

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegan, vegetarian

Equipmentmandoline

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner, snack

Taste and Texturecrisp, herby, salty, sweet

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon fine or flaky sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon very finely minced fresh rosemary
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 large sweet potatoes with skins on, scrubbed clean

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, mix together the sea salt and rosemary. Set aside.

  2. Pour enough oil into a large saucepan to reach a depth of 1 inch. Set the pan over medium heat and heat the oil to 350°F. Test the oil by dropping in a sliver of sweet potato. It should sizzle immediately.

  3. Using a mandoline or a sharp chefs knife, slice the potatoes crosswise into very thin rounds, about 1/16 of an inch thick. Carefully drop a handful of potato slices into the hot oil. Use a skimmer or large slotted spoon to turn the potato slices frequently, and fry them for about 2 minutes, or just until they are golden brown. Carefully but quickly remove them from the oil to a large paper-towel-lined rimmed baking sheet or a large brown paper bag to drain. Continue to fry the sweet potatoes in batches until you have fried them all. Let the chips cool to room temperature.

  4. Sprinkle some of the rosemary salt over the chips and place the chips in a decorative bowl or napkin-lined basket. Serve the chips at room temperature.

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Made these many times before bags of them appeared on grocery store shelves. It was my answer to yams on Thanksgiving, and offered as an appetizer, which were then eaten so fast, my head would spin. It's best to choose long, evenly round, and straight as possible sweet potatoes, and then slice them evenly and not too thick. Practice with a few first to get the density/water ratio of that sweet potato/yam. You want this well understood because the frying is a "feel" thing along with a "see" thing. It is easy to over cook these chips. Also, instead of Rosemary, which is lovely, as is Feta!, try sprinkling Ancho powder with anything else you like that goes well with it, such as a bit of cumin, a bit of hot pepper...along with the salt after frying. I like to add lime zest along with ancho and will next do a Middle Eastern riff with sumac and Turkish red pepper flakes. I like to add these while the chips are still hot so the spices stick. If I could figure out a way to slow down the eating of these, I would. Hungry young men have always been around and now waiting for these chips! Be prepared to spend a lot of time slicing and frying and sprinkling and arranging them carefully and have them disappear before your hands have set down the prettily lined basket!

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