If you think potatoes only come in white and orange, you’re missing out on a big segment of the world’s potato population. In fact, your regular white potatoes are probably used to playing a supporting role on the side of the plate at dinnertime. But what would happen if you added a punch of color to your meal with, say, purple potatoes? Suddenly your potatoes would be the star of the show.
We had a chance to try some of these Okinawa sweet potatoes from Melissa’s Produce and we were completely wowed by the color. On the outside, they’re a nondescript beige. Slice them up and you’ll get a hint of purple. But once you cook them – pow! – the bright purple color practically explodes in your kitchen.
Last week, we got a chance to try some tasty mashed purple potatoes from Melissa’s (here’s a beautiful version made by Valentina of Cooking on the Weekends). But once we got our hands on some of these beauties, we were in a potato chip sort of mood.
To make potato chips, you don’t need to peel these potatoes but you may need to trim them down so that they fit into your food processor easily for slicing. Two additional tips for super-crispy chips: One, slice them super-thin, about 1/16th of an inch; and two, get the potato slices as dry as possible by salting them and letting them drain first.
Purple Potato Chips
2 to 3 Okinawa sweet potatoes
1 cup peanut oil
Scrub the sweet potatoes and trim the ends (no need to peel). Slice them as thin as possible (1/16th of an inch) in a food processor or mandoline. Place the slices in a drainer and toss with salt. Let them sit for about 15 minutes – you may see some purple juice draining out – then rinse and lay out the slices on a paper towel to dry for about 15 more minutes.
Meanwhile, fill a large cast-iron pan about 1/4 inch deep with peanut oil. Heat to 350 degrees. Toss slices in the pan, about five at a time (the slices should sizzle immediately). Give the slices about 15 to 20 seconds before flipping them over with a tong, then sizzle for another 20 seconds before removing them and sitting them on paper towels to drain. Note: They cook fast!
Place the potato chips in a large paper bag and toss with about 1 teaspoon of salt. Serve immediately. Makes about 3 cups of chips. We would say “Serves 4″ but you might wind up (ahem) eating them all by yourself.