On our last visit to Israel, we saw various renditions of this addictive fried sweet potato salad in trendy cafes. The salads are piled so high with crispy fried sweet potatoes it is impossible to dig in without making the whole thing topple. The best you can do is pick at the pile of crispy sweet potatoes, popping the strips into your mouth, until the salad is a more manageable height. Happily, this is not an unpleasant task!
We decided to take a stab at making our own version of this salad at home. We used a small amount of maple syrup in the vinaigrette to play up the sweetness of the sweet potatoes. It’s just right: not too cloyingly sweet, but sweet enough to hit the sweet spot in our palates.
Crispy Sweet Potato Salad
For the Salad:
- 1 large sweet potato
- ¾ cup oil for frying
- 1 package mixed baby salad leaves or baby spinach leaves
- 1 granny smith apple diced
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup roasted salted pecans or walnuts
For the Maple Vinaigrette:
- 1 Tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons whole grain Dijon mustard
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
1. Prepare fried sweet potato strips: Peel the sweet potato then use peeler to create wide paper-thin strips of sweet potato.
2. Heat oil in a deep skillet. When oil is hot, add sweet potato strips a few at a time. When golden and crispy (about 5-7 minutes) remove with a slotted spoon. Can be made a few days in advance; store in an airtight container at room temperature.
3. Prepare the dressing: Place vinaigrette ingredients in a small container. Shake to combine.
4. Assemble salad: Combine all salad ingredients except for sweet potato strips in a large bowl. Toss with enough dressing to pleasantly moisten. Pile fried sweet potato strips on top just before serving.