These could well qualify to be called as Shakarkandi ke gutke, which is a sticky chaat made using tamarind and black salt, some red chilly etc etc. These sweet potato finger chips are a diantier, drier version of them. Shakarkandi or sweet potatoes as we call them in India, are actually a yam. We get the purplish skinned, pale flesh variety here but the Vitamin A content is not compromised much. This is the season for sweet potatoes and I love getting all fresh produce that I see in the markets. After all the fruits and vegetables come packed with nutrients when they are at the peak of their growth or fruiting stage.
Shakarkandi is roasted on charcoal traditionally in winters and is tossed up in a quick chhaat with either kala namak and lime juice or with slices of star fruit that comes in this season too. I make several versions of chaats and salads with sweet potatoes and add them to a few curries as well. Yes I learnt adding sweet potatoes ever since I tasted the famous Labra that Bengalis make and the winter special Undhiyu that Gujratis make. I feel I am a sucker for rustic foods from regional cuisines and can't get enough of it.
But this recipe is beautiful to look at, dainty chips that won't let you rest in peace until you have polished off the last crumb. I usually make it for our weekend teas or as a part of an elaborate meal sometimes. But a healthy snack it is when the two of us are alone at home, the snack sometimes gets too much and we skip the next meal. It's a free world you see :-)
I would say the recipe is very simple. Now, a simple recipe is not a new thing on my blogs, you probably come back to my recipes because they are simple and doable, healthy and tasty. Please say yes. I will feel happy.
(makes 2-3 large servings, as a filling snack)
one large fat sweet potato with skin, about 200 gm
2 tbsp honey
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp fine red chilly powder
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp sesame seeds
Discard any spotted skin from the sweet potato and brush it clean. Now chop it in batons 1 cm thick. You wont get nice and crisp finger chips if you cut them thicker, but the taste will be great, so don't worry if some of them are a bit thicker.
Toss all the ingredients together and spread them evenly all on a baking sheet. Adjust seasoning before you bake, it's all a matter of personal taste and there should be a good balance of sweet, sour and hot in this recipe.
I use silpat but you can use parchment paper or a nonstick baking pan or a glass or ceramic baking dish. Bake at 200 C for 10 minutes, toss once and bake again for 7-10 minutes or till you see almost dry finger chips, sesame gets crisp so you get the idea. The chips are softer inside.
Great accompaniment to tea or coffee. You can always serve it along with some cream cheese or feta cheese as an aperitif.
Let me know if you try the recipe. We have been having them regularly this winter, taking advantage of season's bounty. Who cares for fried snacks when we can bake them right.