Some, being me, might say sweet potatoes are the nectar of the gods. I love baking up a big one for dinner, sprinkling it with a little brown sugar, and finishing it off with a dallop of butter. Or sometimes I cut a few into chunky cubes and drizzle them with a little honey and a squeeze of lemon juice, and roast until they are tender and sweet. But my all-time favorite way to eat sweet potatoes is this delicious casserole found every year on my Thanksgiving table. Hey, never judge marshmallows AND corn-flakes in the same dish until you’ve tried them. (Man, I love being a Southerner!)
But sometimes, just sometimes, you need to serve something with a hint more elegance. Why not slice up these bright orange tubers, baste them in a butter, molasses, and brown sugar glaze, and pop them in the oven until they are perfectly caramelized and tender. And on a crisp fall afternoon, what better way to add a little Southern comfort than with a liberal splash of bourbon? Um, yes please.
I happened to make these beauties on a beautful SEC football Saturday. And while they would have been perfect paired with a crisp Thanksgiving turkey, I enjoyed them with a Zing Zang Bloody Mary and leftover stuffed crust pizza, ’cause that’s how I roll.
PS – the leftovers make a tasty addition to any breakfast table: just add bacon and creamy grits. I’ve done it twice already!
BOURBON-GLAZED SWEET POTATOES
Source: Bon Appetit, Y’all by Virginia Willis
4 to 6 sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and sliced about 1/2 inch thick
4 tablespoons butter, plus more for the baking dish
1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup bourbon
2 tablespoons sorghum, cane, or maple syrup
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Butter an ovenproof gratin or casserole dish. Arrange the sweet potato slices in the prepared dish and season with salt and pepper.
In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, butter, bourbon, and syrup and bring to a boil over medium high heat. As soon as the sauce starts boiling, pour it over the sweet potatoes. Bake the casserole, basting and turning the potatoes occasionally, until the sweet potatoes are soft and tender, 45 to 50 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.