Monday, November 21, 2011

Simple Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Yams

For some reason, I 'm always astonished when I discover a simple, easy way to cook something.  We do tend to over-complexify sometimes, don't we? 

Organic yams and sweet potatoes, looking very fresh and wholesome,  have been appearing regularly at my local Yokes Fresh Market.   I recommend preparing more than you'll need for one meal ... they reheat beautifully and can be sliced or diced and fried to make a lovely hash with leftover duck, turkey or pork.

When peeling yams,  be sure to peel through the light-colored layer just underneath the skin, to the darker orange layer underneath. 

I recently learned that yams and sweet potatoes are "cured," which means allowed to dry a bit after harvesting. Because of that, yams and sweet potatoes should be stored in a cool, dry place, and not in the refrigerator. I've tested this new bit of knowledge, and it seems to be true!

You'll need:

Yams and sweet potatoes
Coconut oil (you could probably use butter or olive oil; I haven't tried it yet)
Salt and pepper

1)   Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2)   Peel your yams and sweet potatoes and cut into roughly same-sized chunks.  They'll cook more evenly that way.

3)   Melt some coconut oil (I used 1/4 cup for 2 yams and 2 sweet potatoes) and pour it into a mixing bowl. 

4)   Add the yam and sweet potato chunks and toss to evenly coat.

5)   Tip yams and sweet potatoes onto a baking sheet (I used the bottom of a broiler tray).

6)    Sprinkle with salt and pepper, or herbs, spices and seasonings to taste.

7)   Roast for 40 to 50 minutes, testing near the end of the roasting time to see if the thickest pieces are tender through.

Serve, or place in casserole and cover to keep warm until serving time.

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