Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Roast Sweet Potato Snacks

You ready for healthy, cheap, easy, good, but...ugly.

We got you covered. Well, actually my friend Vanessa has you covered, but I stole her idea, so watch your ideas people.

A month or two ago, Vanessa and her husband went on a paleo-style diet where they ate primarily vegetables, fruits, and meat. During that time, we had lunch together once. And by 'had lunch together,' I don't mean 'went to a restaurant.' Silly. (Like, with our kids, it would have been a nightmare.) I mean 'went on a cheap Mommy lunch together where we packed stuff and then ate on the floor.' And there sat Vanessa (and her toddler) sitting there eating turd-looking foods as though they were Go-Gurts (which if you really think about it isn't exactly the aesthetic equivalent of a Van Gogh either). She was eating cold sweet potatoes, skin and all just like that. So were her kids. And I thought, "Gross. I like sweet potatoes and all, but not cold and not the skins. Pass the butter and brown sugar, please." And then a few weeks later we were having another mommy lunch at Vanessa's house and she offered me one. I was still hungry and I'm a little daring, not to mention the fact that I'm not one to say no to free food.

They were awesome. Even the skins. I had another.

Vanessa told me that the trick is to roast them nice and long. She'd done her fairly small sweet potatoes at 400 for about 2 hours. In this way, the potato has plenty of time, not just to roast, but to caramelize around the skin parts. Even if you over-do them, the insides will be yummy. She also told me they were a lot of fun to eat in public with your kids because people inevitably cannot control themselves from commenting in that slightly rude way surprised bystanders tend to have. As in, "What are those things your child is eating!?" Notice you never get those comments when your child is eating an unnaturally blue concoction (that will inevitably turn his poop a funky shade of green) being squeezed from a tube.

But I digress. It took me a while to get to making my own sweet potato snacks. I am the only sweet potato lover in this house and I wasn't sure I'd be able to get to them before they went bad. However, I notice that now that they're around (I made 4), they're the perfect thing for finishing off a meal. They're somewhat sweet and appease that natural desire to finish a meal with a bit of sweet. They're also filling without being overwhelmingly so.

So don't fear the cold weird sweet potato with skins on.

Roast Sweet Potato Snacks
Serves 4
Roast time: 2 hours
Cost: .50

4 smallish sweet potatoes

Roast at 400 for 2 hours. Do put a pan with foil under them as they tend to ooze and it's a pain to clean.

If your sweet potatoes are large, you can roast longer. Or you can cut them in half (cut them short-ways, not long-ways). The cut end will harden and you'll have a smaller snack to enjoy.

Store in refrigerator after they've cooled. Vanessa stores hers in a big Ziploc. She says they can get messy. I just threw mine in the fridge without wrapping at all, though I do think it dries out the skins, so I plan to wrap them up next time.

Note: If you decide you hate these after you've made them, then just mash the insides and serve warm with butter and brown sugar. Or puree the insides and slide them into unsuspecting foods like hamburger (it's so good; you'll be shocked), mac and cheese, or smoothies.


1 comment:

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