Sometimes the hardest thing you have to do is start something. Whether it’s as simple as getting up from the couch or more serious like starting a new exercise regime, the first step can feel absolutely insurmountable. Don’t worry, it’s not really.
Still, getting to that first step? So hard. I think that’s why we set arbitrary dates for change — like New Years Resolutions. In reality, it doesn’t need to be the New Year to make a change for the better. You can do that anytime. This is why we’re not waiting for the New Year to revive the Eat. Live. Be. Challenge. Cate, Joanne, Patsy and I all agreed that we need change to come now, not later.
Eat. Live. Be. Reboot begins on Wednesday. The new iteration of this challenge is a lot looser than before. We’ll be cycling through some basic topics, and talking a lot about inspiration — the things that inspire us. The first topic is magazines, so we will all be sharing something from a magazine that opened out eyes a bit. Want to join in? You can keep up with Eat. Live. Be. Reboot on our Facebook page. Also, follow along on Twitter with our new hashtag, #ELBR. And if you are interested in posting, just share a bit of magazine inspiration on your blog on Wednesday. It’s that easy.
Now, let’s get onto the food — sweet potatoes, actually. They’re so good for you — rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin C. If you aren’t eating sweet potatoes yet, you should be.
Of course sweet potatoes pose their own special challenge to deal with. I mean, if the thing that you can’t seem to start has to do with sweet potatoes, then I can hardly blame you for succumbing to that challenge. Sweet potatoes are hard and tough to slice through. It takes some serious elbow grease and all that. But if you are willing to make the effort, it’s totally worth it. Sweet potatoes are seriously good for you. And the flavor? Love that natural sweetness.
One of my favorite things to do with sweet potatoes is to make fries. Oven fries, actually. Since they aren’t deep fried, they are still pretty healthy. And what kid can resist a fry? Really. Everyone in our house loves them, especially when they are crisp on the outside and soft on the inside.
When you are making them, there are some musts though. I’ve found that oil — not just oil spray but actual oil — is necessary to achieve that, along with a hot oven and a nonstick cooking surface. One more thing too: you can’t overcrowd the baking sheet. If things get too tight, you just need to use two baking sheets instead of one. Seriously. That’s super important.
Of course, there are other little things that help too — like good seasoning and a cute little fry-making helper. (Check and check.) With garlic and Italian seasonings, these sweet potato fries have that sweet-savory thing going on that I just love. These are so well seasoned that you barely need a dipping sauce … but they are great with ketchup too.
- 1 lb sweet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch thick fry shapes
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. It needs to be fully preheated before baking. Line a baking sheet with nonstick aluminum foil.
- Place the sweet potatoes into a resealable bag. Add the olive oil, salt, garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Seal and shake 'em up. Pour the sweet potatoes out onto the prepared baking sheet. Arrange in a single layer, but don't crowd. If you need to, use two baking sheets.
- Slide the pan into the oven and cake for 35-40 minutes, flipping the fries twice, until cooked through and lightly browned.
- Serve immediately.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of four cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to a tween and a teen, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.