Chili Cheese Fries was another challenge I had to face: I asked my followers on Facebook for their favourite (NOT low-carb) meal. My challenge was to make a LOW-CARB alternative. I have to admit it wasn't easy to find a low carbs replacement to potato fries. I tried zucchini, aubergine (eggplant), etc. and discovered that these although tasty didn't resemble potatoes at all. Carrots or sweet potatoes would be a good alternative but they were out of the question: they are high in carbs and you need to use a great deal of them. Finally, I got some swede and turnips and in my opinion, these are best replacements for potato fries! They're not the same, but fairly close :)
Nutritional values (per serving):
|of which Saturated||15.1||grams|
Macronutrient ratio: Calories from carbs (8.8%), protein (22.8%), fat (68.4%)
Ingredients (makes 4 servings):
- 2 large turnips (350g / 12.3 oz)
- 1 medium swede (rutabaga) (250g / 8.8 oz)
- ½ tsp garlic powder (or paprika / chilli / herbs)
- 1 tbsp ghee, melted (or red palm oil, coconut oil or other cooking oil)
- ½ tsp salt or more to taste (I used pink Himalayan)
- oil spray (olive or coconut)
- ½ cup grated cheddar cheese (60g / 2.1 oz)
Note: if you can't find turnips or swedes, you can also try kohlrabi (carbs content and taste are similar).
When looking for ingredients, try to get them in their most natural form (organic, without unnecessary additives).
- Get all the ingredients you will need for the chili sauce: tomato purée, ground cumin, paprika, onion flakes, garlic powder, Xanthan gum, 1 cup of water, pepper and salt.
- Grease a pan with bacon fat or lard over medium-high heat. Add mashed garlic and cook briefly (if you are not using onion flakes, add finely chopped onion and let it brown). Crumble the minced beef into the pot and cook while stirring frequently until the beef is evenly browned. Cover with a lid and turn the heat down. It's time to prepare the sauce.
- In a separate bowl, mix all the ingredients well and add them to the pan with the browned meat.
- Add a second cup of water and boil for about 10-15 minutes.
- When done, set aside.
- Now, let's make the fries. Preheat the oven to 450 F / 225 C.
- Wash and peel the turnips and swede. Cut them into spears about 1/2 inch / 1 cm wide (or even less for crisping them up).
Note: Turnips are slightly lower in net carbs than swede (aka rutabaga). They are commonly used in paleo diet meals. Turnips are usually smaller, have yellow & green peel and light flesh. Swede is rather large, has purple & yellow peel and orange flesh.
- Drizzle a tablespoon of cooking oil of choice over them and mix well to allow the oil everywhere. Turnips and swedes tend to be hard and you will need to precook them before baking them in the oven. Simply place them in a plastic bag and microwave them for about 7 minutes.
- Remove from the microwave oven and open the bag to allow the hot vapour outside. Remove the fries from the bag and place them (without any residual water) to a baking pan lined with baking sheet. Sprinkle the garlic powder (or any spices & herbs you wish) over them evenly using a sieve and spray with some olive oil. Garnish with salt and place in the oven for about 15-20 minutes. Keep an eye on them to make sure they don't get burned and stir once or twice.
- Remove from the oven and serve immediately. Always keep in mind these fries are not the same as potato fries. They are missing the starch and they tend to get quite soggy.
Enjoy your meal and let me know how you did! :)