Monday, December 18, 2017

Cranberry Orange Sauced Sweet Potatoes and A Break From School

It's incredibly hard to believe that in the past four months I've only found time to post once.
That's crazy.  Honestly, I've just been incredibly busy with school and these little posts have had to take a bit of a back burner.

I've been absolutely itching to cook, you just have no idea!
I've had an ever-growing list of recipes I want to try over the course of this semester and I'm so excited to have gotten through finals so that I can finally tackle some of them.

The other day it was cold, gray, and rainy- perfect weather for staying in pajamas and having fun in the kitchen.  One of the first recipes I tried out was for Cranberry Sauced Sweet Potatoes.
It just seemed kind of fitting given the holiday season and all.

I don't know about you, but I love cranberries.
Like love.

Sweet Potato Waffles with Cranberry Maple Syrup made with leftover Thanksgiving sweet potatoes?
Yes please!
That White Cranberry Pecan Nutmeg Fudge I made last year?
Ohmy.  That stuff will make you weak in the knees.

As soon as those fresh cranberries hit the produce department shelves in the Fall I stock up.  They freeze so well and I enjoy being able to cook with them regardless of the season...and to be honest, there really isn't a time of year when I don't want to eat my homemade cranberry sauce.
One of my favorite flavor combinations is cranberry and orange, and- much like with my cranberry sauce- both of those flavors play off of each other in the sauce that coats the roasted sweet potatoes in this dish.  A little sweet, a little tart, a little citrusy- completely delicious.

I really left the original flavors alone when I made this and the sauce was delicious as-is, but I can see the addition of a little cinnamon or even veering off into a more savory direction with some roasted garlic or onion adding to this as well.  I'll definitely be trying those variations next time!

6 medium sweet potatoes, cubed
3 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 C butter
1/4 C packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 C fresh orange juice
1 1/4 C fresh cranberries, rinsed
1/2 tsp cornstarch mixed with
2 Tbsp cold water

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees F.  Place sweet potatoes in a shallow roasting dish.  Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat.  Bake 35  minutes, turning frequently, or until soft and golden brown.  During the last 10 minutes of baking, prepare sauce.

2. Melt butter in medium saucepan (or place oil in saucepan).  Add brown sugar, salt, orange juice and water, stirring over low heat until sugar dissolves.  Add cranberries; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 5 minutes or until cranberries start to pop.

3. Stir cornstarch mixture into cranberries; cook, stirring constantly, until sauce comes to a boil.  Reduce heat and cook 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture is slightly thickened.  Place sweet potatoes on serving platter. Top each with cranberry sauce.

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