Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Crispy Sweet Potato Cakes : A New Favourite From The Spice Goddess Bal Arneson

Bal Arneson is the Spice Goddess on the Cooking Channel. Growing up in India learned about how to combine herbs and spices to make the most ordinary dishes extraordinary. Since arriving in North America, Bal has shown that virtually any cook can create tasty dishes using meats and vegetables that are quite common here.

One of my favourites is something I plan to include as a part of the Thanksgiving celebration : Crispy Sweet Potato Cakes. Sweet Potatoes are indigenous to the Americas and meld perfectly with Indian Spices.

Here's the really good new on Sweet Potatoes : the dietary fibre in them helps regular blood sugar level in diabetics. They are also packed with carotenes (the precursors to Vitamin A source of vitamins C, B2, B6, E and biotin (B7). They also have good amounts of manganese, folate (folic acid), copper and iron.
The cakes are a party food but I love them so much that I just have to include them in the holiday buffet! Even if you have Thanksgiving all planned out, these are sure to become a favourite any time of year.
Bal graciously allowed me to share this recipe.

Crispy Sweet Potato Cakes courtesy of Bal Arneson


2 cups cooked sweet potatoes
1/2 cup chickpea flour*
1 tablespoon garam masala*
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons yogurt
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil


Mash the sweet potatoes in a bowl and then add the chickpea flour, garam masala, ginger, salt,
 cilantro, and yogurt. Mix well and then form into small patties about 2-inches in diameter.

 Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and cook the patties in batches so they have plenty of room to fry.

 Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, or until they are golden and crispy and cooked through.

Yield will be about 14 cakes.
To find out more about Bal Arneson, check out The Spice Goddess on
*Garam Masala is a mixture of spices that usually includes black pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, star anise, corriander seeds, nutmeg and cloves. With the exception of cardamom most Americans have experienced all of these flavours. Garam Masala can be found quite readily in supermarkets.

*Chickpea (Garbanzo Bean) flour is high in protein and Gluten Free. Bob's Mills is the most readily available brand and is in many large supermarkets. I pick up mine at Whole Foods in Montclair NJ.

With all situations, including foodie endeavors, I have discovered that "unless you ask, the answer is always no." If you have trouble locating an ingredient be sure to ask your grocer. The last time I picked up Garam Masala and Chickpea Flour I had to ask (it was still in the storage area in the back, without asking I would have gone home empty handed)