I've never loved potatoes. Except the gratin a former farm friend made for my 21st birthday (with '21' written in cherry tomatoes!), I've never had a potato dish that has floored me. Not until I started dating someone from Eastern Europe did I realize my disdain towards potatoes. If you skipped geography class, know that their land and climate is very conducive to potatoes. And potatoes. And beets. And potatoes.
The potato issue was sure to surface. As what happens too often when you know you're right, compromise is glaring around the corner. For me, that compromise came by way of sweet potatos.
Growing up in a lefse-baking household, the closest my heart came to liking potatoes were the square bumps of potato mixture that would soon become lefse. And these were potato flakes, mind you. So it doesn't even count. (To my mother's defense, I have heard from many-a-lefse baker that dried potato flakes do work best.)
A sure sign of this Sprout's maturation was the move from flaky potato tendencies to deep sweet potato love. I never saw the full potential of these beauties as they were usually disguised under a large pillow of marshmallows at Thanksgiving. My recent situation had me digging for alternatives, and soon things became clear. The sweet potatoes unearthed themselves. (I hope you're all catching these puns I'm throwing at you.)
Unlike my awful puns, sweet potatoes don't need much help to get noticed. But remember, they're called sweet potatoes for a reason, so please put that bag of marshmallows away. Or else I'll have to send a sad bag of Idahoes your way.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes
4-6 sweet potatoes
olive oil (we used sunflower oil)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Scrub sweet potatoes to remove any dirt. (I keep the skin on as it adds texture and an earthy quality.) Trim a portion of the pointy ends off if you wish, in order to make cutting consistent pieces easier. Cut each sweet potato in half horizontally and vertically, then into 3-or-so wedges, depending on the size of the sweet potato.
Try your best to have all the wedges the same size so they will be cooked through consistently. Put them in a baking pan and drizzle oil, salt, and pepper over the potatoes. Stir or toss to coat. Put in the oven until they're at the texture to your liking - approximately 30 minutes.
Sometimes, for fun, I crank up the heat towards the end to get things nice and toasty.