I know you’ve heard me lament about resto food.
When I first moved to Toronto, one of my favourite restaurants was Fresh. A vegetarian restaurant serving nice salads and wraps. I have since found their dishes hit or miss and usually a miss unless it is the grilled veggie and pesto burrito. Please do not try their soba noodles! A soggy mess that disgraces Japan. However, their sweet potato fries with the miso gravy never disappointed and have rightfully been voted the top sweet potato fries in Toronto.
For the BBQ, I made a variety of seasonings for the sweet potato fries. I tried a batch with garlic, lemon pepper and smoked paprika, adapted from a recipe from Radiant Health, Inner Wealth, a batch with a Moroccan spice blend including cinnamon and cumin (somehow my spices went too toasty for my liking [aka burnt], so I didn’t serve them), as well as a one with simple salt and pepper. Other then the Moroccan batch, both turned out great. I really liked the roasted bits of garlic with the sweet potato fries.
At Fresh, the sweet potato fries are lightly spiced with sea salt, basil, tarragon and rosemary, but the winner was the miso gravy. Creamy and salty, it is a perfect match for the sweet fries.
Thankfully, the folks at Fresh are happy to share their (not-so) secret recipe, with it appearing both in their cookbook and online in the Toronto Star. It took me a while to crack out the recipe, but I am delighted I finally did! My guests discovered the miso gravy also worked well with the grilled chicken, pork tenderloin as well as the salad. What wouldn’t taste delicious with a miso gravy?
Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Fries
3 cups thinly sliced sweet potato (cut into 1/2 cm thick slices)
1 tbsp oil (olive, coconut, or sunflower)
1 tsp coconut sugar, sucanat or white sugar
4 medium cloves fresh garlic, pressed (or 3/4 tsp dried granulated garlic)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp dried onion granules
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1. Cut the potatoes into 1/2-cm thick slices. Next, cut each slice into sticks that resemble the shape of French fries. Keep them as uniformly sized as possible so that they cook evenly.
2. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Place the potatoes along with all of the other ingredients in a large bowl. Using a rubber spatula, toss everything together very well so that the potatoes are evenly coated with the seasonings and oil.
3. Place the potatoes on a nonstick (or lightly oiled) cookie sheet, scraping all of the seasonings onto them with the spatula. Spread the potatoes out over the pan so that none are overlapping. Bake for about 10-15 minutes. Turn them over with a heat proof spatula, then bake for another 10-15 minutes or so (or until they are delectably browned on both sides). Serve immediately.
Fresh’s Miso Gravy
4-1/2 tbsp spelt flour
1/4 tsp garlic granules (or powder)
3/4 cup nutritional yeast
1-1/2 cups vegetable stock or filtered water
1/3 cup olive oil
1-1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp miso paste, light or dark
3/4 tsp fine sea salt
1. Combine olive oil, mustard, miso and salt and set aside. In small saucepan over low heat, stir together spelt flour, garlic powder and nutritional yeast. Whisk in stock or water to make a paste. Raise heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 1 minute. Whisk in oil, mustard, miso and salt until smooth. Serve hot. (Refrigerate until ready to use.)
Makes about 2-1/2 cups.