Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Perfect Sweet Potatoes

I am a huge fan of sweet potatoes as I've mentioned on here before. They are extremely good for you (438% of your daily Vitamin A, 37% of your daily Vitamin C and 15% of your daily fiber needs) and just delicious as well. 

Though I am a fan of sweet potato fries, I try to stay away from fried foods most of the time. I get why normal potatoes need to be fried- they aren't that great prepared simply, so frying them in oil and adding a bunch of salt elevates them to a whole other level. 

How good does that look!?

But sweet potatoes are fantastic prepared simply. You really don't have to do much to make them really amazing. 

My favorite way to prepare them is by roasting them in the oven with some smoked paprika (an obsession), salt, pepper and just a touch of olive oil. A little really does go a long way here. 

The Perfect Sweet Potatoes
3 large sweet potatoes, cut into fourths*, skins on**
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
a few whirls of fresh ground pepper

Heat oven to 425 degrees F. 

Cut the potatoes into fourths, combine oil, paprika, salt and pepper on parchment paper on a pan with the potatoes. Bake for 20 minutes, flip them over and bake for another 20 minutes. 

* I used to always dice my sweet potatoes, but after seeing the Barefoot Contessa cut hers into fourths, I realized leaving them larger allows for more fluffy center to crispy edge ratio in the finished product. So go larger, trust. 

** You really should keep the skins on as that's where all the fiber is. I give them a good scrub with a dish scrubber (sans soap!) and they're good to go. 

Finally, if you haven't noticed, I only used 1.5 teaspoons for all three potatoes! And as you can see in the photos, it was more that enough to get them crusty and delicious. I know a lot of people who are very generous with the oil and it really does add up (1 tablespoon has 120 calories vs. 40 calories for one teaspoon). 

I enjoyed one of these at lunch, on top of a bed of arugula with cannellini beans. Yum! 

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