Thursday, April 11, 2013

Sweet Potato Cakes with Tangy Dipping Sauce

I really loved these sweet potato cakes.  For me, it was all about the texture. Crispy exterior, fluffy interior, and a creamy dollop of tangy yogurt sauce. All those textures in one bite really make your mouth happy.    

Of course, the flavor is pretty spot on too. The sweet potato is definitely the star in this recipe, as it should be. The flavorings are rather subtle and I like it that way.  Little hints of soy sauce, chile, and green onion help to accentuate the flavor of the sweet potato, not mask it. 

The tangy yogurt dipping sauce is crucial to this recipe.  In fact, I would go so far as to say it actually makes the recipe.  The sauce is creamy yet light and refreshing.  It has a little pop of freshness from the lemon and a little tang from the yogurt and sour cream and it really cuts through the richness of the buttery sweet potato cake. A perfect combination!

Sweet Potato Cakes
Adapted from Plenty
by Yotam Ottolenghi
Serves 4

2-1/4 pounds peeled sweet potatoes, cut into large chunks
2 teaspoons soy sauce, or a dash more to taste
scant 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoons chopped green onion
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh red chile, or more if you wish
plenty of butter for frying

For the Dipping Sauce:

3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons sour cream 
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
salt and black pepper

Steam the sweet potatoes until completely soft, then leave in a colander to drain for at least an hour.  
*Note: I'm not sure it's essential to drain the sweet potatoes.  I checked on mine after they were draining for 30 minutes and I noticed no liquid.  Depending on the moisture in your potatoes you may be able to skip this step, or at the very least, reduce the one hour of draining in half. 

To make the sauce: Whisk together all the sauce ingredients until smooth; set aside to allow flavors to develop. 

Once the sweet potatoes have lost most of their liquid, place them in a mixing bowl and add the rest of the ingredients (except the butter).  Mix everything together, preferably by hand, until the mix is smooth and even; do not over-mix.  The mixture should be sticky; if it's runny add some more flour.

Melt some butter in a non-stick frying pan.  Each cake should be roughly 2 inches in diameter and 3/8 inch thick.  Fry the cakes on medium heat for about 6 minutes on each side, or until you get a nice brown crust.  Place in between two sheets of paper towels to soak up the excess butter.  Serve hot or warm, with the sauce on the side. 


  1. Perfect, perfect exterior, Kim! The more I think about these, the more I like them.

    Have fun!

  2. Tasty and so pretty Kim. I bet these were a big hit at your house.

  3. Oh Yum! This is exactly the kind of snack that would disappear in no time at all in my house! Looks so good!

  4. i adore sweet potato, this looks like the perfect lunch. the dipping sauce looks awesome too!

  5. I swear every time I open up Plenty, I discover a recipe I've never seen before! How crazy that I've never noticed this in the book before! It's totally my kind of meal!

  6. Aren't they delicious?? I just made a batch too. I love the freshness of the spring onion & the hit of chilli against the sweet potato & then you're right the tang of the dippings sauce is the perfect companion :)

  7. Okay ... I'm sold on trying these! Just your description of the dish draws me in! Great starter for a special meal!

  8. I am a self-proclaimed potato lover, and sweet potatoes make it to the very top. The sauce sounds perfect, especially anything with cilantro. I love these as a tapas idea.

  9. I am thinking I definitely need to make these. The combination of the cakes and that dipping sauce is making me drool! ;-)

    Hope you are having a great time on your anniversary trip! ;-)

  10. Like, Deb, I definitely need to make these too - they've been on my radar ever since Michelle made them last week. The look so good and I love pretty much anything with sweet potato in it, and that creamy, tangy dipping sauce sounds heavenly. Actually I could just eat a bowl of the sauce.

  11. These look AMAZING! Maybe I'll try them for this week's root veggie challenge. Thank you for sharing!

  12. I was thinking of making these for this week's root vegetable theme! They look good!

  13. Definitely an awesome small meal or appetizer....I would love, love these- We will soon be planting sweet potatoes and this would be a most creative use for them.


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