For the puffs
- 500g sweet potato
- 4 tbsp self-raising flour
- Salt and pepper, to taste
To deep fry
- 1000ml vegetable oil
- A small piece bread, to test the oil
For the dipping sauce
- 15g creamed coconut, at room temperature, very finely chopped, or mashed
- 2 tbsp boiling water
- 3 tbsp sweet chilli sauce, at room temperature
- 1½ tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
- The day before: Preheat oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6. Slit the skin of the sweet potato. Place directly on an oven shelf and bake until soft – about ¾ hour. Put a tray underneath the shelf to catch any drips from the ends of the potato so they don’t burn onto the oven floor. Remove from the oven and cool overnight.
- To make the dipping sauce: mix the boiling water with the creamed coconut to make a smooth paste. Mix with sweet chilli sauce and 1tbs chopped coriander. The mixture should be cloudy but not lumpy: remove any lumps by mashing well if necessary. Serve at room temperature in a small dish, and sprinkle with the rest of the chopped coriander.
- To complete the puffs: Scrape out the flesh of the baked sweet potato and measure 400g. Discard skin and any remaining flesh. Put the measured sweet potato into a processor with the self raising flour and a little salt and pepper. Process until a smooth, sticky paste then transfer into a piping bag with a 1cm serrated nozzle.
- To deep fry the puffs: Put oil in a large pan, or wok. The oil should be at least 10cm deep, but should not come more than half-way up the pan*. Alternatively, use a deep fat fryer according to the manufacturers’ instructions. Heat the oil until it will brown a cube of bread in 15 seconds – no hotter - otherwise the puffs will burn. Pipe 3cm lengths of mixture into the hot oil, cutting off each one with a sharp knife. Keep turning the puffs over, and deep fry for about 1 ½ - 2 minutes until well browned but not burned. Drain on kitchen paper.
- Serve as soon as the puffs are all cooked with the dipping sauce in a bowl beside them. The puffs are beautifully crisp on the outside, with a soft melting interior. The dipping sauce looks good in a small white bowl. You can eat the puffs cold, but they lose the delicious crispness.
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