Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Less sugary than traditional candied yams, these sweet potatoes rely on the natural sweetness of pineapple juice, with just a hint of brown sugar to form a syrup that’s flavored with vanilla and cinnamon. The pineapple adds some tangy acidity that further balances the sweetness of the potatoes and the syrup that coats them. By parboiling the sweet potatoes before baking them in this recipe (which can be done a day or two ahead), you’re cutting down the cook time — and ensuring that you’ll get fork-tender spuds. This dish is finished on the stovetop, which helps the syrup to thicken and come together quickly.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 4medium sweet potatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds total)
- ¾cup pineapple juice
- ¼cup packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 4tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Step 1Wash and peel the sweet potatoes, then cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick disks. Transfer the sweet potatoes to a medium or large saucepan and cover with water. Bring the sweet potatoes to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the sweet potatoes are al dente and you can pierce their flesh with a fork with pressure, about 5 minutes. Transfer the sweet potatoes to a large, oven-proof cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven.
Step 2Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Add the pineapple juice, brown sugar, vanilla and cinnamon to the skillet. Cook over medium until the sugar has dissolved; stir to combine. Arrange the sweet potatoes evenly in the skillet, then add the butter pieces on top.
Step 3Use an oven mitt to transfer the skillet to the oven and bake the sweet potatoes, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until tender and their flesh easily yields to the tines of a fork, 30 to 35 minutes.
Step 4Transfer the skillet to the stovetop and bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce to a hearty simmer. Cook, until the liquid forms a thick syrup and coats the sweet potatoes, about 3 minutes. Serve warm.