- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 tablespoon nori flakes (see Note)
- 2 teaspoons shichimi togarashi (see Note)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- Pinch of freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sambal oelek or other Asian red chile sauce
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
- 4 white or orange sweet potatoes, unpeeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick sticks (3 pounds)
- In a large pot, heat 3 inches of vegetable oil to 350°. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the nori flakes with the shichimi togarashi, salt and pepper. In another small bowl, mix the mayonnaise with the sambal oelek and lime juice.
- Working in batches, fry the sweet potato sticks until they are tender and golden, about 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the sweet potato fries to paper towel-lined plates to drain. Generously sprinkle the hot fries with the nori-togarashi mixture and serve immediately with the spicy mayonnaise on the side.
You can buy nori flakes (called aonori) at Asian markets, or you can make your own: Toast a sheet of nori in a dry skillet for 1 minute, then finely grind it in a spice grinder. Shichimi togarashi is a Japanese seasoning blend that includes chiles, sesame seeds and orange peel.