By: Therese Leyton
The Comfort Food Of The Vegetable World Sweet Potatoes Go Savory!
When the days get shorter, and the weather turns colder, we tend to stay inside and eat comfort foods. Creativity can be a challenge.
Sweet potatoes are my favorite comfort vegetable, and they pair well with other vegetables or meat or can be a meal alone. Sweet potatoes can be cheerfully orange on your dining table, and are a sweet match for any meal. My favorite is a baked sweet potato. Many people like baked sweet potatoes with marshmallows as a side dish. However; adding chopped nuts, orange juice and a dash of cinnamon to your sweet potatoes is the way to go these days.
Sweet potatoes are vegetables that represent Fall and Winter, and general good health. Filled with beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium and fiber, they are perfect complements to any meal.
Beta-carotene is a natural, powerful antioxidant. Vitamin A, or Retinol, is converted from beta-carotene by the enzyme dioxygenase. It is fat soluble, stored in the liver and used when the body needs it. This Vitamin A is called Pro-Vitamin A. However, Vitamin A from animal and fish foods does not need to be converted and is called Preformed Vitamin A.
Sloan Kettering Cancer Center has published that beta-carotene may slow growth of cancer cells while boosting immune cells that destroy cancer.
Sweet potatoes are so delicious plain or with toppings. My favorite is to bake them for 60-70 minutes. Then top them with light butter and cracked pepper. But in the November magazine bon appetit, many different toppings were suggested: chickpeas, roasted broccoli, crumbled feta, black beans, cheddar cheese, scallions, avocado, cooked sausage, lentils, and crème fraiche. I think crispy bacon would be very tasty too.
Oven roasted sweet potato fries and wedges are fun to eat—so yummy and easy to make. Just toss ½-inch thick wedges with olive oil and salt, place in a single layer on a baking sheet, and bake for 20 to 30 minutes at 425 degrees, turning occasionally. Then add a dip! There are dips such as Sriracha mayo, or mayo mixed with green onions, but my favorite is plain ketchup. This can be a great healthy snack!
I make a lot of concoctions in the crock pot during cold weather days. I add sweet potatoes, onions, carrots and chunks of beef or sausage. Season to taste and you have a healthy comfort meal. Be creative!
I found this wonderful recipe on the internet and I am going to serve it at my next family gathering.
The colder weather is upon us. Let us all embrace healthy recipes. Sweet potatoes are delicious. Eat sensibly. Happy Holidays!
Regards and best wishes,
EMERIL’S SWEET POTATO BACON BISCUITS
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease a large baking sheet and set aside. In a bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the butter and work in with a pastry blender or your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- In a bowl, whip the sweet potatoes with the brown sugar until very smooth. Add tothe flour mixture and mix in lightly but thoroughly with your fingers. Add 3/4 cup of the buttermilk and the bacon and gently work to make a smooth dough, slightly sticky, being careful not to overwork and adding more liquid as needed 1 teaspoon at a time.
- Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and pat out into a large rectangle about 1/2-inch thick. Cut into 10 large biscuits and place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until golden brown and risen, 15 to 18 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and serve hot with butter.
28 mins · 237 cals per serving
Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse, 2003
Makes 10 biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup mashed cooked sweet potatoes, cooled
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
5 slices cooked bacon, drained and crumbled
3/4 to 1 cup buttermilk
TOASTED MARSHMALLOW SWEET POTATO PIE
(I USE A HEALTHY TOPPING INSTEAD OF MARSHMALLOWS)
30 minutes • 6 hours, 30 minutes
1-pound sweet potatoes scrubbed
¾ cup packed light brown sugar
¾ cup heavy cream
6 egg yolks
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 tablespoons of fine yellow corn meal
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
- For filling: preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prick sweet potatoes a few times with a fork, then wrap in foil. Place on a baking sheet. Bake until very tender 40-60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. When cool enough to handle, remove foil and peel off skin. Transfer sweet potato flesh to a food processor or blender;puree until smooth.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together sweet potato puree, brown, sugar, cream, egg yolks, butter, cornmeal, cinnamon, kosher salt, nutmeg, coriander and cardamom.
- Transfer your pastry to the freezer if you made it for 15 minutes to get cold. Or if store bought put it in the freezer too.
- Preheat oven 425 degrees and bake the pie crusts without the filling for 25-27 minutes. Use tinfoil to protect the crusts and place it in the pie crusts and cover the edges.
- To assemble, reduce oven temperature to 325. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 egg and the water, brush egg mixture over crimped edges of the pie crust. Pour filling into the pie shell. Bake the pie on center oven rack until edges of filling are puffed and the center jiggles only slightly when shaken, 40-50 minutes.
I think this sounds delicious and I do not think a rich topping is necessary. I recommend roasted chopped walnuts to cover the top to make the topping healthier or use a whipped topping that is low fat.
I would serve this delicious pie with a natural vanilla ice cream.