Thursday, November 19, 2009

Turkey Day is Fast Approaching

You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces - just good food from fresh ingredients--Julia Child

I love Wednesdays -- because the NYT Dining Section runs. I can spend my whole hour commute reading and savoring it. In yesterday's, Mark Bittman gave 101 ideas for Thanksgiving jams, soups, salads, veggies, breads, and desserts. I was thinking of trying them all, but I don't know what Chris and I would do with all the food, especially since we're headed to NY for the holiday. There were a few really great recipes (Brussel Sprout Sliders), but I have a great side dish to add: Pecan Pie Sweet Potatoes w/ Sausage:

Take 3-4 large sweet potatoes, peel, and cut into chunks. Toss in a bowl with olive oil and salt and place in 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes, or until the potatoes get soft and slide off a fork. In the meantime, brown some sweet sausage on the stove until cooked through, adding a bit of chopped garlic, if you like. Drain, and return to pan. Add 2 TBS of butter, half a bag of "Pecan Pie" flavored pecans (you can get these at the grocery store), a dash of red pepper flakes, a dash of nutmeg, and some kosher salt. When that gets all warm and gooey, toss in the sweet potatoes. Mix everything together and put in a casserole dish. Add a few more pats of butter and 2 TBS of maple syrup. Stir it up and place in the heated oven for a few minutes more, until the potatoes get a bit softer--almost carmelized. Enjoy on Turkey Day, or with a nice pork loin. Tasty.

The first time I made this, I put the maple syrup in with the olive oil on the raw potatoes and then left the potatoes in the oven way too long and they turned into sticky, gooey, sweet potato carmels. Which, although they didn't look that great, tasted amazing. The pan was a disaster to clean though (I let Chris handle), so now I add the syrup at the end and it still tastes the same.

You live some you learn some.

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