Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes
Dorcas Annette Walker

Every autumn when the leaves begin to change colors and the brisk breezes begin to blow up here on the mountain, I am drawn to cooking with Sweet Potatoes. This is the time of year that stores stock fresh supplies of Sweet Potatoes making it easy to add to your menu. Sweet Potatoes provide excellent nutrition as they are loaded with carotenoids, vitamin C, potassium, and fiber and are one of the most versatile vegetables to fix. Sweet Potatoes can be prepared as part of the main meal in a baked casserole, mashed, eaten by themselves, grilled, or served as a snack. There are endless possibilities when it comes to preparing Sweet Potatoes. Here are a couple of ideas to try:

Microwaved Sweet Potatoes

Poke holes all around a whole sweet potato with a fork, then it wrap up a paper towel or place in a microwave bowl with a lid (what I always do when preparing several potatoes at a time), and microwave until soft when you pierce the sweet potato with a fork. Cut the sweet potato in half, place butter and a scoop of brown sugar on top. Garnish with cinnamon and serve!

*You can also use applesauce, crushed pineapple, raisins, or chopped pecans as added toppings!

Sweet Potato Fries

Cut sweet potatoes (peeled or with skin left on) in half and slice into wedges. In a bowl combine melted butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon and toss until the potatoes are coated. Place on a baking tray in a single layer and bake at 350º for thirty minutes until crispy brown. Serve hot!

*You can also substitute taco seasoning mix, paprika, garlic salt, red pepper, or Tabasco sauce to give your fries added zest!

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

Bake sweet potatoes wrapped in tinfoil in the oven at 350º for forty-five minutes until soft. Let cool, then cut in half, and scoop out the center. Mash the sweet potato and mix with a little milk, butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Pour the mixture back into the shells, sprinkle on chopped pecans, and bake for ten minutes until the nuts are toasted and the topping is slightly browned. Serve hot!

*You can also add cream cheese or cottage cheese to the sweet potato mixture for a creamier texture!

You can find the recipe for my Candied Orange Sweet Potato and Sweet Potato Delight on my Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at:

Weekly tip: Handle sweet potatoes with care as their skins are delicate. Store in a cool dry place as dampness will cause the sweet potatoes to spoil. Never store raw sweet potatoes in the refrigerator as the insides will become hard and affect its taste. If sweet potatoes are stored properly they will keep for several months!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a published author, columnist, speaker, freelance magazine writer, and photographer from Jamestown, Tennessee. Contact her at: For more recipes check out her Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at:

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