The wife gave me a mandoline for Valentine’s Day and I’ve been waiting for a chance to break it in. Last night we decided to make some healthy, homemade, sweet potato chips. I set the slicer to 1/8″ and went to town. It’ll take some practice to get perfectly even slices, but I was pleased with the model we chose.
It’s amazing how far one potato goes when the slices are so thin.
I sprayed some baking sheets with canola oil and spaced the slices evenly. This is one and a half potatoes:
I baked them at 375° for 20-25 minutes. I took them out when the centers started to brown, sprinkled them with kosher salt, and let them cool on some paper towels.
Some of them came out crispy, but others were a little moist. Next time, I’ll cook and cool them all on a raised rack. The air flow beneath the chips should cook both sides more evenly.
While the sweet potato chips were cooking in the oven, the wife and I made a garlic and onion aioli dipping sauce (the recipe is below).
And since dinner can’t consist of just chips and dip, I also sauteed some shrimp. Aioli is a great alternative to cocktail sauce.
I recently got a relatively cheap, 10″ Cuisinart nonstick pan for the few times I cook eggs or cream sauces, and I thought I’d break it in as well. Since I had the time, I slowly infused a tablespoon of olive oil with garlic and lemon zest over medium-low heat.
When the garlic started to burn, I spooned it and the zest out of the pan. I added a pat of butter and dropped in the shrimp. The pan caramelized them nicely. It’s taken me a long time, but I’ve finally gotten good at knowing when to take the shrimp out and let them finish cooking on a serving plate. They tasted great.
Here’s the aioli recipe:
- 1 clove garlic, quickly chopped
- 2 green onions, quickly chopped
- 1/4 small yellow onion, quickly chopped
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1/2 cup olive oil (or vegetable oil)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Top with smoked paprika
In a food processor, pulse the garlic and green/white onions until minced and thoroughly combined. Combine the egg yolks and lemon juice in a bowl. Add them to the pulsing processor until well blended. Slowly drizzle the oil into through the feeding hole (in the lid) of the processor until the sauce emulsifies. When the sauce is thickened, add salt and pepper to taste.
This aioli had a nice bite to it, but it tasted better with the shrimp than the chips. I usually make aioli with sauteed shallots and roasted garlic instead of raw, but this was an interesting alternative. Next time I’ll make a blue cheese aioli to serve with the chips by omitting the onions and garlic and adding a few ounces of blue cheese and chives.
Aioli is really easy to make; it’s basically a dressed up version of mayonnaise. You can add some chopped dill and use it to make potato salad or add some sour scream and fontina and use it to make a spinach dip. Either way, it’s both versatile and easy, and that’s a winning combination in my book.