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Fried Tater Tots with a Sweet and Spicy Thai-Inspired Glaze

Chef and TV personality Andrew Zimmern brings the flavors of Thailand and Vietnam to crunchy tator tots, making it impossible to eat just one. Try it, we dare you!

Andrew uses 4 tablespoons fish sauce when making this at his house, but we recommend starting with 2 tablespoons and simply adding more if you’d like a richer umami flavor to contrast the sweet and spicy.

Fried Tater Tots with a Sweet and Spicy Thai-Inspired Glaze
Serves 4

Ingredients

For the tator tots:
2 quarts peanut oil
4 cups frozen tater tots
Sea salt

For the sauce:
1 teaspoon red chile flakes
2 teaspoons black sesame seeds
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 to 4 tablespoons fish sauce, or to taste
1/3 cup Thai sweet chile sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
12 slices fresh ginger
1 tablespoon toasted and crushed peanuts
2 scallions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
1 jalapeño, thinly sliced

For serving:
1 tablespoon toasted and crushed peanuts
Small handful mint sprigs
1 tablespoon thinly-sliced scallions
Cilantro leaves
Thinly sliced red jalapeños, optional

Directions

1. Make the tots: In a large, heavy pot or wok, heat oil to 385 degrees. Add tator tots and fry until brown and crisp, 5 to 6 minutes. Drain on paper towel. Season with salt.

2. Make the sauce: In a skillet over medium heat, place red chile flakes and sesame seeds. Toast 1 minute.

3. Stir in sugar, chili sauce, lime juice, ginger, peanuts, scallions, mint, cilantro, jalapeño, and 2 tablespoons fish sauce. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Taste, and add more fish sauce, if desired. Cook, stirring frequently, until thickened and glazed, about 3 minutes.

4. Add tator tots, tossing to coat in sauce, and cook 1 minute.

5. To serve: Pour onto a plate. Garnish with peanuts, mint sprigs, scallions, cilantro, and red jalapeño, if using.

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