Knowing the holidays are upon us, it’s time we organize and plan our menus to reflect this festive time of year of giving and eating. From now until New Year’s, I’m introducing a series of fresh and healthy dishes for the holidays. Some recipes are reinterpretations of classic recipes with a healthy twist. Other recipes are new ideas to serve with traditional classics. The festive holidays are no different then the rest of year, for we should all strive for a healthy and balance lifestyle everyday.
This citrus-flavored whipped sweet potato dish is more about flavor than adding sugar. Traditionally, sweet potato dishes are loaded with too much sugar and marshmallows. We forget the sweet potato has a natural sweet and clean taste. Quite honestly, additional sugars aren’t necessary. In addition, thick Greek yogurt adds a creamy texture and a tangy flavor. Lastly, topping this whipped dish with a crunchy hazelnut topping balances the natural sugary flavors and adds a nutty taste and texture.
Orange Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Hazelnuts
- 1-1/2 lb. sweet potatoes
- Olive oil; as needed
- The zest and juice of one orange
- 1/2-cup unsweetened, thick whole-milk Greek yogurt
- Sea salt and fresh black pepper; as needed
- 1/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
- (Optional) 1 tbsp. brown sugar; add more or less based on personal preference for sweets
- (Optional) 1-2 tbsp. dark gold rum
- Garnish: 1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts (or any nut)
Serves 4 to 6; easily increase ingredients for large parties
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Clean and pierce sweet potatoes with a fork several times. Lightly oil sweet potatoes and wrap in foil. Place wrapped sweet potatoes on a backing sheet. Place sweet potatoes in the oven to roast for at least 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are soft. Remove sweet potatoes from the oven. When cool enough to handle, unwrap sweet potatoes to cool completely.
- Trim and discard ends of the sweet potatoes. Use a paring knife, lightly cut into the skin vertically. Peel and discard the skin to reveal the bright orange flesh.
- Place peeled sweet potatoes in a food processor. Add orange zest and juice. Pulse to puree until smooth. Place sweet potato puree in a large bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, except the garnish.
- Place sweet potato puree in a baking dish. Top with hazelnuts. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.
Serve warm and enjoy.