Deepa’s Secrets is filled with healthy twists on Indian cuisine, but one of the most genius twists was this take on a healthy staple—sweet potato fries. Double-baking them means you’ll get a super crispy fry (even on leftovers day!), and the seasonings are not only delicious but super healthy. Fennel is an incredibly effective digestive aid, acting as a stomach soother that reduces nausea, gas, bloating, and cramping. It also helps ensure smooth elimination (together with the fiber-filled sweet potato, this may be the most delicious constipation-reliever in existence!). But fennel’s wondrous properties don’t stop there. According to author Deepa Thomas, “fennel seed is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory which can help manage heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and arthritis. The taste is similar to anise, but anise and fennel are two different plants in the same botanical family—the fennel plant can be eaten in its entirety.”
Best-Ever Oven-Roasted Sweet Potato Fries
- 2 sweet potatoes, cut into evenly sized fry wedges (skin on is fine)
- 2 shallots, sliced
- 1 teaspoon cayenne flakes
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon chaat masala (optional)
- Heat oven to 400ºF.
- Mix and toss all ingredients (except chaat masala) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast for 30 to 40 minutes. Stir and rotate once, halfway through. Check more frequently toward the end of the baking time to make sure they don’t burn. Reheat before serving to crisp up!
- If you want crispier fries, make them ahead of time: Bake the fries (15 to 20 minutes) up to a day ahead and store in a single layer on a baking sheet in the fridge. Finish roasting (15 to 20 minutes) just before serving. Twice-baked fries are even crispier!
In a munching mood? These are the best healthy snacks of 2017 (so far). Plus, 10 foods to add to your diet to ensure the perfect poop.
Liz Moody is an author, blogger and recipe developer living in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated with a creative writing and psychology degree from The University of California, Berkeley. Moody has written two cookbooks: Healthier Together: Recipes for Two—Nourish Your Body, Nourish Your Relationships and Glow Pops: Super-Easy Superfood Recipes to Help You Look and Feel Your Best. She also hosts the Healthier Together Podcast, where she chats with notable chefs, nutritionists, and best-selling authors about their paths to success. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Glamour, Food & Wine & Women’s Health.