Orleans Fries (inspired by The Friendly Toast)

It seems like ages ago now, since Kelley first took me to The Friendly Toast in Portsmouth, NH. It was really only about two years ago but it was a life-changing experience because it was there that I tasted the best sweet potato fries of all time (yes, I don’t think they’re going to get better than that, although I can always hope). I won’t talk about the other amazing things you can find at The Friendly Toast right now, although I would highly recommend you pay it a visit if you’re in Portsmouth or Cambridge, MA! But back to the sweet potato fries. The Friendly Toast offers a dish of what they call “Orleans Fries”, which is a huge plate of sweet potato fries topped with brown sugar and Tabasco sauce with a side of sour cream for dipping. The combination of all of those flavors and textures is phenomenal. The acidity of the hot sauce has a sort of caramelizing effect on the brown sugar so when the two come into contact, the sugar melts into a gooey delicious sweet/hot mess. And I didn’t think I liked hot sauce.

My rendition of Orleans Fries (smaller plate)

My rendition of Orleans Fries (smaller plate)

I recently scrapped the idea of baking my sweet potato fries at home because I just couldn’t get them crispy enough, so I went on a slight binge of frying up as many sweet potatoes as I wanted! Honestly, I tried a lot of different oven methods for making crispy sweet potato fries and none of them really did it for me (although I have heard that it’s possible). Really, the easiest way to get the perfect balance of crispiness on the outside and softness on the inside is to just fry your fries. It’s a little less healthy this way but if you’re going to do fries then you have to do them right! So as part of my sweet potato fry frenzy, I cooked up some of my own Orleans Fries and I am willing to share the recipe and change some lives today.


Orleans Fries (Friendly Toast style)

(makes one big plate of fries)

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch-wide strips

2-3 cups vegetable oil

about 2/3 cup brown sugar

Tabasco sauce

sour cream for dipping

  • Heat up oil on medium-high heat in a small pot, using enough oil to create a deep enough pool for frying. 
  • Once oil is bubbling, drop sweet potato slices into the oil in small batches (about a large handful) at a time. Let them fry for a couple of minutes, keeping a close watch. Once they start to brown on the outsides, scoop the fries out with either metal tongs, a metal slotted spoon, or two metal forks (don’t use anything plastic- it will melt!).
  • Place fries on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the extra oil.
  • Once all of the fries have been cooked, transfer to a large bowl and toss with the brown sugar to coat all of the fries.
  • Transfer fries back to the plate (getting rid of the oily paper towels) and drizzle Tabasco sauce over the fries. Use as much or as little Tabasco as you’d like, although the more the better in my opinion. Be sure to coat the brown sugar with Tabasco, since you want Tabasco to caramelize the brown sugar on the fries.
  • Either dab some sour cream right on top of your fries or keep it on the side for dipping.
  • Dig in!