Sweet Potato… Delicious and Healthy/recipe
I would like to invite you to follow me over the next few days as I prepare my Thanksgiving meals. I will be sharing memories, recipes and tips on preparing my Thanksgiving meal. I will be preparing meals for two different settings this Thanksgiving. My mother-in-law always begun in September preparing for the holiday meals. I do not begin that early. I usually wait until the day before. This year I have decided to begin a little bit earlier, twelve days earlier to be exact. I am going to work on some part of my meal each day. Today I am going to make sweet potato casseroles. Since this dish freezes very well, I am going to go on and make three, two for Thanksgiving meals and one for Christmas. I am going to use a recipe from a lady (Ms Vernice) who has passed on but left cooking tips and recipes in the hands of many.
Sweet potatoes can be baked, candied, or fried. Casseroles, fries, soup, pie, cobbler, chips, pancakes, and biscuits are a few ways you can prepare the sweet potato. The sweet potato which is also known as a yam has several big health benefits. A sweet potato is a root vegetable and is a starchy food but not as starchy as its distant cousin the potato. There are several varieties of the sweet potato. My favorite is the variety that is orange inside and out. Several varieties have this pale color. I am not sure which varieties I use. They seem to have a natural sweeter taste than the pale colored ones. All varieties come in different sizes and shapes. The smaller ones do bake better but the larger ones yield more sweet potato when making a casserole.
There are many health benefits in the sweet potato. I would like to bring to your attention five major benefits.
1. Sweet potato’s are very high in FIBER. Being a high fiber carbohydrate means they are a slow burning starchy food and makes them a good choice in weight management. This is a benefit that is not found in its distant cousin “the potato”.
2. Because of it’s high content of B-6 the sweet potato is a heart healthy vegetable. B-6 helps to keep the passages of blood vessels open, flexible and healthy which allows blood to flow easily. They also contain POTASSIUM which levels out fluid levels in your body helping to control blood pressure. Potassium also helps to regulate the rhythm of the heart and helps with brain function. The foods of a low carbohydrate diet tend to be low in potassium. A sweet potato would be a good food to add occasionally for the potassium value.
3. BETA-CAROTENE is a form of vitamin A. It has been found to prevent several forms of cancer. Beta-Carotene helps to prevent and repair sun damage to your skin. It also aids in prevention of vision loss, eye disease and macular degeneration.
4. MANGANESE is a trace mineral found in the sweet potato. This is another benefit that offers great weight management. Manganese is a natural way of controlling the appetite. Manganese also helps with healthy blood sugar levels, increases energy levels and helps with premenstrual issues in women.
5. Sweet potato’s offer a good dose of vitamin C and E. These two antioxidant vitamins offer the benefit of disease prevention. They also aid in skin and hair health. I guess the sweet potato is healthy inside and out.
Enjoy those Thanksgiving sweet potatoes and know you are doing something good for your health. http://www.naturalnews.com/035739_sweet_potatoes_beta-carotene_nutrients.html
I would like to share a memory with you about sweet potatoes. My Maw Maw was a very small woman. In my life time she had no teeth. Remember these two facts about her. She and my Paw Paw always lived in a very modest country home. They were also my neighbors. Just like my dad, Paw Paw and Maw Maw worked the land to grow their food. My Paw Paw would plow up the sweet potatoes and several kids and adults would help pick them up. They kept them in a room away from the wood heater so they would not ruin. Everyday I was privileged to visit Paw Paw and Maw Maw. Sometimes I would spend the night. Every morning my Maw Maw would wake up early. They did not have a hot water heater so to get hot water you had to heat it in a pan on the cook stove or wood heater. Every morning she would always heat water in a small pan. She washed her face and hands with this warm water. After her morning wash up she would prepare and put biscuits on to cook for breakfast. After breakfast she always put sweet potatoes in the oven to cook. After they cooked she turned off the oven and kept them in the oven to stay warm. They remained in the oven until consumed. I remember seeing her grab a sweet potato and bite into it peel and all. Her little mouth with no teeth looked so funny eating that sweet potato. I can still close my eyes and see her little mouth. It looked like it was taking over her whole face. I always had to laugh and then she would exaggerate the motions of eating and laugh right along with me. It is a sweet memory of a sweet lady.
My Thanksgiving Menu:
Chicken and Dressing
Sweet Potato Casserole
Now I am going to share my sweet potato casserole recipe with you. Hope you enjoy it with your family this holiday season.
Ms Vernice’s Sweet Potato Casserole
4 or 5 large sweet potato’s
1/2 cup of sugar (optional)
1 stick of butter
1 tsp vanilla
Scrub sweet potatoes until very clean. Boil sweet potatoes with “jacket” (peel) on. Boil until you can pierce all the sweet potatoes easily with a fork. Run cold water over the sweet potatoes until cooler enough to handle. Remove all the peels. Add butter, vanilla, sugar and eggs. Mash with a potato masher until smooth. Pour into a casserole dish.
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup plain flour
1 stick butter
1 cup chopped pecans
Bring ingredients to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes. Spread over top of sweet potatoes and bake at 300 for 45 minutes.
TIPS FROM VERONICA
1. I do not use sugar in my sweet potatoes. They actually have a richer taste when not so sweet. 2. I double the topping recipe so there is plenty to cover the sweet potatoes. 3. This casserole freezes very well. DO NOT put topping on if freezing. Cool to room temperature. Then tightly cover with foil. Cool in refrigerator for 24 hours. Place in freezer up to 3 months. Thaw in refrigerator for couple days before baking.