Since my boys have become teenagers, weekend family dinners are impossible to predict. Sometimes none of the kids will join us and sometimes they’ll all show up with hungry friends in tow. My husband and I often go out on Saturday nights, but Friday night, after a hectic work week, we usually welcome a relaxing evening at home. Out of these circumstances of unpredictable kids and burned-out parents, a really fun tradition has emerged for Friday nights at our house. I call it “Platter Night”. Rather than planning a meal, I put out a platter of delicious nibbles in the family room. We pour ourselves a glass of wine or a cocktail, listen to music, sit on the couch, and graze. If the kids show up, they join us. We can easily include our friends or theirs. There is no table to set and the evening feels like a long luxurious cocktail party – a perfect way to cap off the week and start enjoying the weekend.
I don’t like to fuss too much for platter night – usually I’ll serve sautéed cut-up sausages with toothpicks and honey mustard to dip. There’ll be a crudité of whatever raw veggies I have in the fridge, with Annie’s Goddess Dressing (my favorite store-bought dressing); one hunk of delicious cheese with crackers or a thinly-sliced baguette.
But I always cook one special thing for platter night, and it is often a vegetable dish that is healthy and irresistible. When I make these hot, spicy sweet potato wedges with chipotle aioli, they are the stars of platter night. They are amazing!
The sweet potatoes have a beautiful balance of sweet, hot and salty. The chipotle aioli is is creamy with notes of garlic, tangy lime juice and a spicy kick of chipotle. The combo is an incredible treat for the tastebuds! And just a side note, the aioli is also spectacular on burgers and sandwiches so you may want to consider doubling the recipe so you have some on hand in the fridge.
Here’s the recipe for chili and brown sugar baked sweet potato wedges with chipotle aioli dipping sauce. If you make this recipe, please come back to leave a review and let me know how you like it!
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 finely minced garlic cloves
- 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice (about ½ a juicy lime)
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
- Salt to taste
- Sweet Potatoes
- 3 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into thin wedges.I suggest you slice the potato into thirds lengthwise. Then cut each slice into "fries." If the potatoes are very long, cut them in half crosswise before slicing them into thirds.
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1½ tablespoons brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon chili powder (Chipotle or other)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional - if you like a lot of heat)
- Preheat oven to 425º.
- Make Aioli Whisk mayonnaise, garlic, lime juice, and chipotle chili powder in a small bowl. Season with salt, to taste. Store, covered, in the fridge until ready to serve.
- Potatoes Toss potato wedges with olive oil in a large bowl. Add seasonings and toss again, to coat.
- Spread potatoes out in a single layer on one or two baking sheets*, and roast for 25-30 minutes, flipping them over after 20 minutes, until they are lightly browned in spots. (*if you use two baking sheets and spread the potatoes out more, they'll be a bit firmer and crisper)
- Mound wedges on a platter with a small bowl of aioli and enjoy!
Below are the original photos for this post. I recently updated the photos, but I decided to keep the old ones for sentimental value. This is one of my earliest recipes on Panning The Globe, recipe #5, before I knew anything about food styling and photography. Being a food blogger has been, and continues to be, a continual learning process. I like to see where I started and where I’ve come.