It wasn’t until recently that I began incorporating sweet potatoes into my everyday cooking. (I LOVE grilled sweet potatoes… my favorite way of preparing them!) Growing up, my family did not have them for Thanksgiving or any other time of year for that matter. And the sweet potatoes I did try at friend’s houses were, well, gross. Toppled under globs of marshmallows and other sweet items, it was a sweet, mushy festival I didn’t want to be a part of.
Fast forward to Thanksgiving 2011. I offered to bring a gluten-free stuffing to my husband’s family’s Thanksgiving meal. I was then counter-asked to also bring “the sweet potatoes.” I felt as if there were some sweet-potato expectations I wasn’t privy to. So I began doing some internet searching. I decided “to heck with it,” I’ll just make some sweet potato french fries and call it a day. But then my brain started turning. I have to travel 1 hour to my destination with sweet potato french friends in the trunk of my car. It’s cold outside. The sweet potato fries will get cold. Then turn mushy… ARG! I called on my good friend Rachel for some sweet potato bail-out assistance. And she wonderfully shared with me her mother’s roasted sweet potato and apple recipe. It was a HUGE it. Thank you Rachel and Grandma Sue Sue.
The tartness of the Granny Smith apples really plays well with the sweetness of the potatoes. The potatoes are only cut up, not mashed or mushed. (Perhaps I have eating sweet potato baby food as a subconscious nightmare?) Yes, there is butter and brown sugar to make this a true holiday dish. I hope you enjoy!
- 6 medium sweet potatoes
- 2 cups Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup butter, cut into cubes
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 1 cup reserved apple water* (see instructions below)
- In a large stock pot, boil sweet potatoes in salted water, keeping them covered until nearly done, approximately 20 - 30 minutes. (It's important to have them slightly firm and not over-cooked as they will be roasted soon.) Remove from heat and strain out the hot water.
- When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel and cut them into 1/2" slices.
- In a large sauce pan, add apples. Fill with water to about 3/4 of the way up the apples. Over medium high heat, bring to a simmer and cook for 2 to 4 minutes or until slightly softened. (Again, do not over cook.) *Reserve 1 cup of the apple water.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease a casserole baking dish and place sweet potatoes and apples in alternate layers. Sprinkle each layer with brown sugar and cinnamon, also dotting each layer with cubed butter. When finished, pour apple water over layers.
- Roast the sweet potato and apple layers for approximately 1 hour or until slightly golden brown. Check liquid about every 15 minutes, adding water when needed.
- Serve with your favorite holiday meal and enjoy!