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Sunday, April 1, 2012

Vegetarian Southern Style: Sweet Potato Casserole.

I like my ice tea sweet, I do not apologize for doing so, it is the southern way.  Until my doctor tells me I can no longer indulge in this glass of sweet goodness, I will keep enjoying at least one glass each day.



Now do not get me wrong, I try to eat healthy and if I can improve on a dish and make it lower calorie then I will.  Most Sweet Potato casseroles in the south are just too sweet for my liking.  I like to taste the sweet potato that is in this dish and not have it overloaded with sugars and fat.  


                          Ingredients


6 cups baked sweet potatoes
1 cup applesauce  (Homemade if you can)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup slivered blanched almonds
4 tablespoons butter (room temperature)
4 cups of mini marshmallows

Adding a 'good' applesauce is key, if you use just store brand of applesauce, your casserole will be just as bland, so keep this in mind while making this easy, yet delicious southern staple.  If you do have to rely on a store bought applesauce, then add to your applesauce, a few good heaping tablespoon's of orange marmalade and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon.


                      Cook those Taters



Wash your sweet potatoes dry them and then set them on a cookie sheet, lined with tin foil, take a fork and poke your sweet potatoes a few times, this will allow for the steam to escape while baking.  Bake at 375 degrees for 1 hour or, until a steak knife is able to slide into the center of your sweet potatoes, with no resistance.  After you take your sweet potatoes out, lower your oven temperature to 350 degrees.

Take the peeling off your sweet potatoes. In a mixing bowl place your sweet potatoes and 1 cup of applesauce.  Using a potato masher, mash your sweet potatoes and applesauce, until it is well incorporated.

Place your sweet potatoes in a buttered (or spray with cooking spray) oven proof dish.  Spread your sweet potato mixture as even as you are able to get it.


Get those Nuts A Rolling


In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar and butter.

Add walnuts, almonds and stir.

Top your sweet potatoes with your brown sugar mixture.

Bake for 30 minutes, in a 350 degree oven.

If you are not a fan of the next step than I would double my nuts, brown sugar and butter.

Place your nut mixture over your sweet potato casserole and cook until the top is golden brown and bubbling and then serve, or you can...  

Make them Over the Top 


                   
After 30 minutes is up, add 4 cups of marshmallow (small ones are better) over your sweet potato casserole.  Place back into your oven for about 15 minutes, check your casserole after 10 minutes.  

Within minutes this dish can go from outstanding to a burnt marshmallow fiasco.

One year during Thanksgiving, I thought I had everything under control, I was at the very last stages, I mean I even had the rolls actually cooked and ready to serve, one thing I am very bad at, getting my rolls to hit the dinner plate warm and ready to sop up all the goodies.

All of a sudden the hubby come running into the kitchen yelling, somethings burning, I looked over at the oven and sure enough smoke was coming out of the oven.  When the oven was opened, my marshmallows on top of my casserole was on fire. 

I scraped the burnt marshmallows out of the pan, added more, repeated the step and all was good.  Yes they had cold rolls but hey, the family is use to this.



                       Just Over the Top!




                               One of my all time favorite southern style sweet potato casserole.

So please keep a eye on those marshmallows and then when you bring this lovely casserole to your dinner table, you will have people licking their lips in hopes to soon lay their fork on your lovely creation.

Homemade Applesauce

Vegetarian:  Southern Style Collard Greens  

All photographs are the property of Denise O.  Do not use unless you get 'my' written permission. All written material is owned by Denise O, it will not be 'used' (sharing my article is different, it is acceptable and appreciated) without 'my' written permission.  Just keeping it real folks.:)

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