I don't eat potatoes. Try not to, anyways. And as much as I heart sweet potatoes, when you are specifically craving french fries, sometimes that sweet orange tuber veggie doesn't quite cut it. Enter, the yucca root. I have to credit Gluten Free Gigi with the intro to this root vegetable. I did not know it existed until I went to a restaurant she had reviewed and recommended here in Atlanta called Fuego Mundo. They had yucca fries, and they were everything I wanted them to be and more!
So since we don't eat out all that much (although I will be going back to Fuego Mundo soon), I decided to look for yucca root in the store and just experiment. It can surprisingly be found at Whole Foods, and my local market for even cheaper. Now these yucca fries aren't deep fried, but they are pretty darn close to that deep fried feel (without the guilt ;). Yucca seemed to brown well in the oven, so you may need to play with the temps if you have a hot gas oven like mine.
I researched the difference between yucca and a white potato. Comparatively, yucca root does have more starch than a potato, which at first seems like a bummer. However, the yucca root has much more fiber than a potato so the starches are not quickly spiking your blood sugar. This makes the fries a little bit chewier and more dense than airy potato fries (which I enjoyed because that meant I could enjoy them longer!). Also, according to sites like this one, yucca root has anti-inflammatory properties where the white potato has the opposite effect and can promote inflammation. Yucca also is high in calcium, and some vitamins like A, C, and B3!
Yucca Friesserves 2-4Ingredients
- 2 yucca root(yam-shaped vegetable that looks like it is covered with brown tree bark)
- 2-3 Tbsp of grapeseed or coconut oil (enough to coat)
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp coarse sea salt (or less if using refined sea salt)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Peel the yucca root and chop into the shape of fries. I cut mine into 1/4" chunks that were about 2"-3" long.
- Mix oil, onion powder, and salt in a large bowl.
- Toss cut yucca fries in with the oil mixture and spread out onto a large sheet pan.
- Bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes until they begin to brown on the pan side, then flip and continue baking for 10 more minutes until browned all over.
For those of you who are doing the Sugar Free Challenge, I have realized that I might need to clarify some things:
- My "rules" for giving up sugar may be too hardcore. But you're not hardcore, unless you live hardcore...as Jack Black says :) I chose to give up dried fruit, fruit juice (meaning concentrated fruit juice- like what is used to sweeten most jellies or store bought apple juice), and stevia. There is not anything inherently wrong with these sweeteners, however in my own personal experience (because I was so very addicted to sugar), giving up these sweeteners is how I had to overcome it.
- However, what works for me may or may not be what works for you. The most important part of taking part in a fast or a challenge like this one, is that you know you best. You know what would challenge you and push you further towards health than anybody else.
- So....keep on trucking with what you are doing! Also, a little encouragement never hurt anybody either. I leave you with a inspiring quote from a friend of mine's blog which she got from her Chiropractor (post here...totally stealing the quote :)
Uncommon Effort for Uncommon Results!
If you are giving up any kind of sugars you normally eat, then you are putting in uncommon effort...so go you :)