Taste Scene

Michael Devlin

The convenience food revolution

These crispy Sweet Potato chips really were revolutionary.

The Devlins decided this week that when (and if) we ever become the proud owners of a dog, it’ll be called ‘Waffle’.

There are two reasons for this, i). Waffles are our little humans’ favourite food and ii). The littlest human in the house can’t yet say the word waffle properly, so we’re constantly asking her to say it on cuteness grounds. Just in case you were wondering, it comes out, ‘Boffle’.


Personally, I can’t say I’m a massive fan of waffles; they’re OK, but I don’t think they’re crazy-good the way the kids do.

To give you an idea of how much they love waffles, when I get up in the morning I normally ask our two what they want for breakfast.

It’s a democracy you see, although if there’s any discord we usually end up agreeing that I was right in the first place.

If however, we agree on waffles, you’d have thought I’ve told them we’re going to Disney Land – to live there on a permanent basis.

They’re like, “YAAAAAAAY! BOFFLES!!!” Fist pumps, dancing around the kitchen the lot.

If they were allowed, they’d eat waffles every single day in life, though we try to ration them to once or twice a week.

Waffles and beans, waffles and poached eggs, waffles with grated parmesan… they’ll even eat them unadulterated and with their


But the reason I mention waffles is… We were on the hunt for some of Captain Birdseye’s finest a couple of weeks ago in a local food emporium (Centra) when we happened across a packet of sweet potato fries. Under normal circumstances, I’m bit of a chip/fries snob.

I have a special method for making my chips and they habitually turn out the Best Chips Ever. However, in the interests of sustaining what remaining mental health I have, sometimes we have to opt for convenience food.

Actually, I have to credit Herself for this one because she ignored my procrastinating and dumped the bag of Strong Roots Oven Baked Sweet Potato into the basket.

Essentially oven sweet potato chips, these bad boys were scoffed alongside a brace of beers on the Saturday night in question and to give you an idea of how many I ate, I could hardly get the beer down.

Proudly boasting a Great Taste Award from 2016, the chips are coated in rice flour for a crispier finish. And what a finish.

Wondering how I hadn’t heard of this crowd before, I did some extensive research the next day (which basically involved typing ‘Strong Roots’ into Google), I have since discovered they are a new start up food company from Dublin and their motto is: ‘Revolutionising the concept of frozen food.’

And what a revolution.

On the Saturday night in question, upon sampling the magnificence of the sweet potato crunch after their exit from the oven, I couldn’t have been happier.

Not as happy as a Devlin little human upon understanding it was boffles for breakfast, mind you.

At the time, I was mid-prep in a Mexican platter (hard shell tacos, spring onions, mature cheddar, chilli peppers, crema, tomatoes), so without further ado, I retrieved the sweet potatoes from the oven topped with the chopped chillies, tomatoes and cheese, blasted under the grill for a few minutes before topping more with chopped spring onions and drizzled crema.

A sprinkling of sea salt later and I was into gorb mode. It was majestic.

The moral of the story for me is (probably) that I should i). Don’t be such a food snob. ii). TRY and listen to Herself more (note the operative word in that sentence capitalised for her/your benefit).

And just in case you were beginning to worry about me, don’t: I still  managed to chug those beers down.

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