November 11, 2010

You know what’s so excellent?  The fact that Thanksgiving is two weeks from today.

In my world, Thanksgiving means: conjuring strange foods we eat only once a year, leaving the house to buy the one item I forgot despite multiple grocery store visits, unbuttoning my pants ’cause I ate too much, then sitting comatose on the couch watching football, spending the day with my mama and Jill, carving and brining and folding and napping and catching up and drinking wine and really blissful sleep.  A holiday left blessedly uncommercialized, all about food and family.  What’s not to love?

If you have some flexibility with your holiday menu, and/or you’re still holding auditions for possible new items, allow me to urge you to consider these sweet potatoes.  A far cry from the traditional teeth-achingly candied treatment sweet potatoes normally get, this side dish pairs them with brown butter and sage, leading to a sophisticated flavor that I think would work perfectly on a Thanksgiving table (especially if you use sage in your stuffing.)

Here are a few other blog favorites that might fit well on your Thanksgiving table:

caramelized onion tart
poached pears with pomegranate
apple tart
stuffed mushrooms

Mmmm sweet Turkey Day, come quickly.  I am ready for you.


barely adapted from Mark Bittman

4 T olive oil
2-3 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and grated, about 4-6 cups
5 T butter
4 cloves garlic, crushed with the back of a heavy knife
generous handful of fresh sage leaves
Salt and pepper

Heat olive oil in a very large skillet over medium heat.  When shimmery, add sweet potatoes and season with a bit of salt & pepper.  Cook, stirring rarely, until the sweet potatoes begin to brown.  Stir more frequently until the potatoes are tender but not mushy.  Be patient!  This will take a while (15-20 minutes)

In the meantime, heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sage; shake pan occasionally. When the butter browns, turn off heat.

Carefully remove the sage & garlic from the butter, saving the former and discarding the latter.  Once the potatoes are ready, drizzle them with the butter and garnish with sage leaves.


  1. I loved these and think I might even add a slight sprinkle of red pepper for some heat.

    Comment by Sharon — November 11, 2010 @ 9:54 pm

  2. If by “excellent” you mean terrifying, then yes. Excellent.

    (Almost all my kitchen “stuff” is in boxes right now and I’m not sure I see that changing before the big day!)

    At any rate, I’ve always been a little iffy on sweet potatoes, but this sounds like it’s going in the “to try” file. You haven’t steered me wrong yet!

    Comment by karinya @ Unlikely Origins — November 12, 2010 @ 9:34 am

  3. YUM. I could also see adding some pimenton de la vera for a little more savory bacony somethin’ somethin.
    In fact, I might imagine they’re like hash browns and just have them for brunch this weekend, instead of waiting for Thanksgiving!! 🙂

    Comment by Joh — November 12, 2010 @ 5:19 pm

  4. Ok, followup comment. I made these, stir-fried, for brunch on Saturday the 13th. They. Were. DELICIOUS. Seriously – aweosme brunch dish when you want to class it up a little and have some healthy with your indulgence. YUM.

    Comment by Joh — November 24, 2010 @ 8:51 am

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