I was discussing with some co-workers last Wednesday how absolutely insane people get over their Thanksgiving traditions. For some people, it is not Thanksgiving without the creamed onions, while others must have the whole berry cranberry sauce or the death of all those Native Americans was for naught. People lose all perspective and insist on eating total crap they would never eat on a normal day just because tradition dictates. Some if it is not even that good. Green bean casserole, I am looking at you. A can of soup mixed with soggy beans? Really?
Traditions are traditions and I hold mine near and dear, but if we are going to gain some weight during the holidays, it should be for good food. (Speaking of gaining weight, I gained 4 freaking pounds over the course of last week. 4 pounds! It was worth it, but the treadmill and I are the best of friends this week. Yowza.) I merely advocate coming up with some better traditions of your own. Truly examine how much you love those store bought rolls or that nasty olive platter with the canned olives.
As I have stated before, I don’t think sweet potatoes should be relegated to a purely Thanksgiving dish. These did make an appearance on my Thanksgiving table, but I hope to make them again before the winter is through. I mean, they call for bourbon; how can you go wrong? They actually taste great, could be lightened up by using milk, and would perfectly compliment a pork dish. I swear you won’t miss the marshmallows.
Bourbon Sweet Potatoes
Adapted from Bon Appetit
4 lbs red skinned sweet potatoes
1/2 cup whipping cream
6 tablespoons (3/4 cup) butter
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 1/2 Tablespoons bourbon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup walnut and pecan mixture, toasted, chopped
Preheat oven to 350°F. Roast potatoes on rimmed baking sheet until tender, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Cool slightly. Scoop flesh into large bowl; discard skins. Mash hot potatoes until coarse puree forms.
Heat cream and butter in heavy small saucepan over low heat until butter melts, stirring occasionally. Gradually stir hot cream mixture into hot potatoes. Stir in syrup, bourbon, and all spices. Season with salt and pepper.