Sweet Potato Po' Boys

  • Yield: 4 servings


1-- large sweet potato
For the fennel marmalade:
2tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
1-- bulb fennel, julienned, leaves reserved
2cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2-- shallots, thinly sliced
-- Pinch of salt
2tablespoons (42 g) agave nectar
For the aioli:
1/3cup (75 g) vegan mayonnaise
1/2teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1tablespoon (2 g) chopped fennel leaves (reserved from the bulb above)
1teaspoon minced garlic
-- Vegetable oil, for frying
1/2cup (120 ml) plain soymilk or other nondairy milk
1/2cup (62 g) all-purpose flour
1/2cup (14 g) cornflakes, crushed
1teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1/4teaspoon cayenne pepper
4-- (6-inch, or 15-cm) French rolls
-- Coleslaw (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F (200 C, or gas mark 6). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. 
  2. Slice the sweet potato into thin rounds, about 1/4 inch (6 mm) thick. You can peel them if you choose, but we like ours with the skin on. Spread on the prepared baking sheet. 
  3. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

To make the fennel marmalade:

While the potatoes are cooking, add the olive oil to a pan and heat over low heat,. Add the fennel, garlic, shallots, and salt. Slowly cook until very soft and tender, and just beginning to caramelize, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the agave and toss to coat. Crank up the heat and cook for about 5 more minutes, stirring constantly, until caramelized, sticky, and browned. Remove from the heat and set aside.

To make the aioli

  1. Whisk all the ingredients together. Keep refrigerated until ready to use. 
  2. Preheat the oil to 350 F (180 C). 
  3. Place the milk in a shallow dish. Add the flour, cornflakes, Old Bay, and cayenne to a resealable plastic bag and shake to combine. 
  4. Dip 1 sweet potato round into the milk to coat and then add it to the bag. Repeat until you have about 5 rounds in the bag. Shake to coat the potatoes with the flour mixture. Carefully add the coated potatoes to the hot oil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, flipping halfway through, until golden and crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Repeat until all the potatoes are fried.
  5. Spread a layer of aioli on each half of the French roll. Pile one-fourth of the sweet potatoes on the bottom half of the roll, top with one-fourth of the marmalade, and add a heaping pile of the coleslaw. Repeat with the remaining 2 rolls. Serve immediately. 

–This recipe reprinted with permission from the cookbook Hearty Vegan Meals for Monster Appetites by Celine Steen and Joni Marie Newman.