Thursday, December 04, 2008

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes

My sister made these twice-baked sweet potatoes for the first time for our Thanksgiving dinner.(We had both noticed the recipe in the November '08 issue of Country Home magazine and really wanted to try them!) They were so delicious, I knew I would have to make them for my husband and I too. I was pleasantly surprised how simple these are to prepare.

Best of all, this is a great make and freeze ahead recipe! The picture in this post shows the sweet potatoes ready for the freezer.

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes

8 medium sweet potatoes(about 3 3/4 pound total)
1/2 cup butter, cut up
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Line a large baking sheet with foil. Prick each sweet potato twice with a fork and place on the prepared baking sheet. bake in a 425 degree oven for about one hour or until nearly tender. Remove from oven and let stand until cool enough to handle.

Cut each sweet potato in half lengthwise. Scoop out the cooked pulp from 10 of the sweet-potato halves, leaving a shell about 1/4 inch thick. Remove all the pulp from the remaining sweet potatoes, discarding skins. Transfer pulp to a large bowl. (I used my Bosch mixer.) Add the butter, salt and pepper to the pulp and mash with a potato masher(or mixer) until the mixture is fairly smooth. Add desired flavor options to the puree.

Use a spoon to fill the 10 shells with puree. transfer filled sweet potatoes to a large airtight freezer container. Cover and freeze up to 3 months.

To bake, remove sweet potatoes from freezer. Thaw overnight in refrigerator. Transfer potatoes to a foil-lined sheet. Bake in a 375 degree oven until heated through, about 40 minutes. Sprinkle plain sweet potatoes with ground cinnamon, if desired.

Makes 10 servings.


Maple-Pecan: (We had this version for our Thanksgiving dinner! Yummy, yummy! ) Stir 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon into sweet-potato puree mixture. Fill and freeze as directed. When ready to bake, drizzle tops with 1/3 cup maple syrup and sprinkle with 1/4 cup finely chopped pecans.

Pear and Ginger: In a medium bowl mash 8 drained canned pear halves with a potato masher until nearly smooth. Add 2 teaspoons ground ginger and stir pear mixture into sweet potatoes. Fill, freeze and bake as directed. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup snipped, dried cranberries.

Manchego and Smoked Paprika: (I've never had this kind of cheese but it sounds great! I suppose you could substitute another kind of cheese for this.) Stir 1/3 cup finely shredded manchego cheese and 2 to 3 teaspoons smoked paprika into sweet potatoes. Fill and freeze as directed. When ready to bake, sprinkle tops with an additional 1/4 cup of shredded cheese.

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