Sunday, November 24, 2013

make-ahead orange-maple sweet potatoes with coconut oil and cinnamon

This make-ahead sweet potato dish is perfect for Thanksgiving, or as a healthy, rich side dish any chilly Fall/Winter evening. You can enjoy it as is, or top it with crushed and/or candied pecans {or marshmallows!}. And since it's a cinch to make, and can be made several days ahead, it's a keeper for busy families, whether you're hosting the feast or just sitting down to a nourishing family dinner.

To make a large batch (12+ servings), pierce five large sweet potatoes and roast them on a foil-lined baking sheet {for easy clean-up} at 375 degrees, for one hour. If you want a smaller batch, simply halve the amounts.

When they come out of the oven the sweet potatoes will be easy to peel. Combine roasted and peeled sweet potatoes with the zest and juice of two large oranges, 2 Tablespoons of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of allspice, 1 teaspoon of nutmeg, a sprinkling of sea salt...

1/4 cup of maple syrup...

and 1/4 cup of coconut oil. {I'm currently looking for healthy ways to add calories/fat to my children's meals, and this side dish was one easy, healthy way to do so.}

Then, using a hand mixer, or potato masher, whip the sweet potatoes to desired consistency.

The prepared sweet potatoes can be made up to 3 days ahead and kept in the fridge, or can be frozen in an air-tight container for up to 3 months.

Orange-Maple Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Coconut Oil and Cinnamon
(makes 12 servings; can be frozen)

5 large sweet potatoes, pierced with a fork
2 oranges, zested and juiced
2 Tablespoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
sea salt, to taste

Preheat oven to 375. Pierce sweet potatoes with a fork, then roast them on a foil-lined baking sheet for 1 hour, or until tender. Once cool, peel sweet potatoes. Combine sweet potatoes with remaining ingredients {zest and juice of oranges, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, maple syrup, coconut oil, and sea salt}. Mash/whip to desired consistency using a potato masher or hand-mixer.

To reheat, warm in a 350 oven, covered with foil, for about 30-40 minutes, or until warmed through. {From frozen, either thaw in fridge for 1-2 days, or double the reheating time, so about 1-1.5 hours.} If adding a topping of crushed pecans, candied pecans or marshmallows, uncover, and add topping for the last 10 minutes of reheating. 

Hope your family enjoys these sweet potatoes as much as my family does!

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