I wrote about sweet potatoes for my article in Capital Gazette newspapers this week. Here are the recipes I tested. I didn’t get the best photos of the finished product as I was managing mounds of potatoes and a couple of these recipes are things I’ve made in the past, but I think you can get the idea.
Peel the sweet potato
Cut into evenly sized (about 1 inch) dice*
Toss with a little oil and your preferred seasonings**
Roast at 400 for about 10 minutes. Turn to ensure even cooking. Cook for another 10 minutes or so or until soft and golden.
* You can cut into wedges, “fries”, large cubes, small cubes, thick rounds. It doesn’t really matter. Just try for even sizing so you get even cooking.
** I like to sprinkle a bit of any of the following (combine to suit your tastes): sea salt, ground pepper, a tiny bit of vanilla, brown sugar or honey, a little cumin, chile powder, pumpkin pie spice/cinnamon or dried thyme, rosemary, savory, marjoram, dried parsley.
I recommend making a couple dipping sauces for roasted sweet potatoes. You can use just about any of these from my fondue party.
Mashed Sweet Potatoes From The Best Vegetable Recipes, by the Editors of America’s Test Kitchen, 2007.
- 4 TB unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
- 2 Tb heavy cream
- ½ ts salt
- 1 ts sugar
- 2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into same size pieces
Combine the butter, cream, salt, sugar and sweet potatoes in a 3-4 quart saucepan. Cover and cook over low heat until the potatoes fall apart when poked with a fork, 35-45 minutes.
Mash with a masher or fork until smooth, season to taste with pepper and serve immediately. Note: do not puree too much or the potatoes will turn to baby food.
- Use water instead of cream, and use some of the liquid to get a smooth consistency when mashing.
- Replace the sugar with 1 ½ TB brown sugar, honey or maple syrup.
- Use 1 ts soy sauce (or to taste) in place of the salt.
- Add 2 ts minced or grated fresh ginger to the braising liquid and garnish with crystallized ginger.
- Add ½ ts sesame oil in step 1, then stir 2 TB toasted sesame seeds, 1 TB tahini and 1 thinly sliced scallion into the mash.
Sweet Potato and Apple Casserole
This dish is great at dinner, but especially nice for breakfast or brunch.
- 4 medium sweet potatoes, roasted or braised until tender
- 2-3 large tart apples
- 4 TB unsalted butter
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup honey or maple syrup
- ½ ts allspice or pumpkin pie spice
- 1 TB lemon juice
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup toasted pecans
Preheat oven to 375°.
Slice the potatoes ¼ inch thick. Peel and slice the apples 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.
In a small saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, syrup or honey, spice and juice; cook over low heat until the butter is melted and sugar is dissolved.
In a buttered 2 quart casserole, place potatoes in a single layer, then cover with a layer of apples.
Pour 1/3 of the brown sugar mixture over, sprinkle with dried cranberries and pecans. Repeat this 2-3 times, as your ingredients or casserole allow.
Bake, uncovered 50-60 minutes.
Puffed Sweet Potato Slices with Crisp Red Onion Rings From Roasting, by Barbara Kafka, William Morrow, 1995
- 5 TB olive oil
- 6 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced on the diagonal into ¼ inch thick slices
- ½ ts kosher salt
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 5 red onions, peeled and sliced into ¼ inch thick pieces
- ¼ ts kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 500°F
- Pour 2 ½ TB olive oil into a roasting pan, smearing to coat. Add half the sweet potatoes, turning to lightly coat. Arrange pieces in the pan so they don’t touch. Repeat in a second pan. Sprinkle ¼ ts salt over each pan of sweet potato slices.
- Pour the ¼ cup of olive oil into a third pan, swirling to evenly cover the bottom of the pan. Gently pull apart the rings in each onion slice; place in the pan, tossing to lightly coat. Arrange in the pan to touch as little as possible, sprinkle with salt.
- Place in the heated oven with onions on the lowest rack. Roast 25 minutes, then turn each piece, rotating the pans front to back and top to bottom. Roast 25 minutes more.
- Pile the sweet potatoes on a platter. Cover with the onion rings, sprinkle with salt to taste and serve.
Sweet Potato Salad in Maple Lemon Vinaigrette From The Art of Indian Vegetarian Cooking by Yamuna Devi, Penguin Group, 1999.
This salad is not only very pretty, but is also a great vegetarian option for the any buffet.
- 6 medium sweet potatoes, washed, unpeeled
- 4 TB maple syrup or honey
- 3 TB orange or tangerine juice
- 3 TB lemon or lime juice
- ¾ ts salt
- ¼ ts black pepper or ¼ ts cayenne
- ½ cup olive oil or 2 tb almond oil with 6 tb sunflower oil
- 1/3 cup fresh cilantro or parsely, finely chopped
- 2 TB chopped candied or stem ginger
- 3 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cut into ½ inch cubes
- Roast the potatoes as noted above, then cut into ½ inch cubes and place in a large salad bowl. Alternative, braise the potatoes in water as noted above, cool then cube.
- Combine the syrup or honey, juices, spices, oil, herbs and ginger in a jar, cover and shake until emulsified.
- Dress the potatoes, toss gently, the cover and refrigerate.
- Before serving, add the tomatoes gently toss and serve on a bed of mixed greens or mache.
Kale or Winter Greens Salad with Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled, 1 inch dice
- 2 TB vegetable or olive oil
- Sea salt & pepper
- 1 large bunch of fresh kale, chard, spinach or beet greens, rinsed, thick stems removed, leaves chiffonade or torn into bite size pieces
- 1 red pear or sweet, tart apple, sliced thin
- 1/2 red onion, sliced thin
- ½ C sliced almonds, or crushed walnuts, lightly toasted
- ½ C dried cranberries or pomegranate seeds
- shaved pecorino, parmegiano or bleu cheese for garnish
- 1/2 shallot, minced
- 1/2 TB Dijon mustard
- Generous pinch sea salt
- 2 TB lemon juice
- 1 TB red-wine vinegar
- ½ cup good quality, peppery extra-virgin olive oil
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Roast sweet potatoes as noted above (seasoned, 400, about 20 minutes)
- While the potatoes roast, make the dressing.
- Toss the kale and dressing just before service, using just enough dressing to coat the leaves. Add the fruit, berries, onion and sweet potatoes and toss to combine. Garnish with just a little cheese.
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