My mother often makes a dish featuring cubed sweet potatoes, cranberries, pecans, cinnamon and orange juice. While I enjoy her recipe, sometimes I yearn for something a bit less sweet. As part of this month’s Farmers’ Feast cooking fest on behalf of the Ottawa Farmers’ Market, I got to thinking about new ways to combine some of my favourite fall flavours in a dish. I realized that sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts might just be a great match….and I was right. This dish would be a great vegan or vegetarian buffet option as well as being an excellent side dish for turkey or roast pork.
- 2 small to medium-sized sweet potatoes
- 10 – 12 Brussels sprouts, roughly chopped in 1/3” (.7 cm) pieces
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) butter (or butter substitute for vegans)
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Wash the sweet potatoes and pierce the skin several times on with the tip of a sharp knife. Bake for 45 – 60 minutes, until tender in the middle when tested with a knife. Note that you can cut the roasting time in half by par-cooking the pierced potatoes for 2 minutes per side on high power in the microwave before transferring to the preheated oven.
- Just before the potatoes are finished roasting, put the olive oil, Brussels sprouts and shallots in in a heavy frying pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, for 10 – 15 minutes until wilted and leaves are beginning to crisp. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Remove cooked potatoes from the oven and let cool 5 minutes. Slice lengthwise and open them up like a book.
- Spread butter over cooked potato flesh then top with sautéed Brussels sprouts, pecans and cranberries.
Serves 2; recipe can easily be multiplied.