Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The "Funny Bone" in Our Thanksgiving Menu

Here's an idea I'm going to try this year, based on a recipe in (of all places) the Wall Street Journal.

Bake 4 medium sweet potatoes. Whip with a can of coconut milk and 2 t. of brown sugar.

I can play around with sweet potato recipes because only Rose will try them and she's not married to any particular way of fixing them since I've always goofed around with them.

Ok, it's just a touch more complicated, so here's the actual recipe. I'm making a half recipe. At least I think I am. It's darned hard to tell what "medium" is in sweet potatoes.

Sweet Potatoes Kittichai

Serves 8
Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking: 65 to 80 minutes

8 medium sweet potatoes
2 cups coconut milk, approximately
1 tablespoon light brown sugar (optional)
1 cinnamon stick
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  • Set the sweet potatoes in the oven and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. After 20 minutes, perforate the potatoes in several places to prevent bursting. They are done when they can be easily pierced with a fork all the way through their thickest part.

  • Let cool, then peel. Cut up roughly and process two or three at a time until smooth. Transfer to a large saucepan.

  • Bring the coconut milk to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes with the cinnamon stick and, if you are using it, the brown sugar. Strain and whisk into the sweet potato purée. (We think the brown sugar distracts from the suave and original mixture of sweet potato and coconut milk. Without it, the purée is truer to its vegetable roots, so to speak.) Add the coconut milk a cup at a time until you get the consistency you like. We use the whole amount, which yields an unctuous but light purée, with a consistency similar to Chef Joël Robuchon's legendary butter-rich mashed potatoes.

  • Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and reheat just before serving.

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