Friday, December 4, 2009

Sweet Potatoes go Savory

For most of my life, I thought I didn't like sweet potatoes. The sugar, the marshmallow...none of it seemed right on a dinner plate, nor did it float my boat for dessert. Then, last year, my husband roasted a couple in the oven and we ate them plain and simple, with just a touch of butter. It was a revelation. We could not believe the rich, deep flavors, and the color was just as gorgeous. It felt like the discovery an entirely new species, something no one had seen before. Of course, I now know that there are plenty of people out there preparing sweet potatoes in plenty of delectable ways. To me, this veggie remains exciting and new, and at this time of year I thrill each week when they appear in my farm share, a very bright note in the sometimes dismal November Rain (cue dramatic piano music).

In hopes of sharing the joy, here is a savory recipe modified slightly from one I found on Epicurious. Simple, seasonal, and impossibly delicious. Bon appetit!

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Garlic and Thyme

4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch rounds. (You can halve these for smaller pieces if you prefer--just lower the oven temp a touch.)
3 T olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1/3 c fresh thyme leaves, or a very generous sprinkling of dried
1/2 t kosher salt
1/4 t black pepper
1/2 t red pepper flakes

Preheat oven to 400. Toss all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Arrange the potato slices in a single layer on/in a baking sheet/dish. Place on top rack of oven and roast until tender and slightly browned, about 40 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, or even cold on a fresh green salad. They are also delicious eaten one by one...throughout the day...from a pretty little dish in the refrigerator.

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