I’ve made a dish for years that we love and is always served on our holiday table that’s called Sweet Potato Souffle. While not really a souffle, the addition of eggs does add an element that I suppose made that name appropriate at the time. I actually recall that I got the recipe from my friend Nancy when we lived in North Carolina which was literally a lifetime ago where my children were born and where I spent some of the best years of my life. I know that I could still eat that dish by the spoonfuls but it seems the longer I live in Colorado, the more I want some spice added to sweet dishes so this year I decided to ‘heat up’ some sweet potatoes that I bought last week and do a trial run for a Thanksgiving side dish.
I had originally planned to fill the sweet potato skins with the mixture but these were huge sweet potatoes; way more than a serving size so instead I used these great little casserole dishes I’ve had forever and way too often forget to use. If you find smaller potatoes, than certainly fill the potato skins and serve in the more traditional ‘twice baked’ manner.
I found as I looked at that old recipe that I just make in a very rote manner that there is sure a lot of added butter and sugar to a root vegetable that is already so wonderfully sweet. I’ve cut back on both; in this adaptation using just a touch of maple syrup while adding some sauteed onion and jalapeno peppers. I kept the egg…it adds a bit of structure that I know I would miss. I must say it definitely did what I wanted and kicked it up a notch (thanks Emeril).
You want a bite don’t you? They are perfect with some oven fried walnut chicken strips (recipe next week!) and simple peas; this is a keeper too, just a bit spicier one!
- 2 large sweet potatoes or yams
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 jalapeno, chopped into fine dice
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 egg, beaten
- 4 Tbsp half and half
- 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter, slightly softened
- ½ tsp chipotle chile powder (or cayenne but the chipotle adds such a great smokiness)
- ⅓ cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Rub sweet potatoes with vegetable oil and pierce all over with a fork. Wrap in foil and place in preheated oven..
- Bake until tender when pierced with a fork; 55-60 minutes.Remove from the oven and allow to cool until they can be handled.
- Meanwhile, put butter and olive oil in skillet and heat until butter is melted. Add diced onion and saute for 5 minutes. Add the diced jalapeno and garlic and saute for 3-4 additional minutes on medium low heat until the onions start to turn golden.
- Cut each potato in half lengthwise. Gently scoop out the flesh and add to the onion and jalapeno mixture in the skillet.
- Add the maple syrup, half and half, beaten egg and salt.
- Using a wire whisk, whisk until the potatoes are smooth.
- Divide the mixture evenly between 2-4 buttered serving dishes depending on volume.
- Add all ingredients except nuts to processor and blend til smooth, Add nuts and pulse just to mix.
- Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the sweet potatoes in the dish; bake until topping starts to brown and mixture is bubbling, 15-20 minutes.
- Serve in the dish or scoop onto plates for smaller servings.