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Lanie’s twice-baked sweet potatoes

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For many years I have been searching for the signature sweet potato dish to serve with Thanksgiving dinner. Not too sugary. Not too labor intensive. Just a simple and delicious sweet potato side for the big autumn holiday meal. This year I considered several recipes and combined some ideas to develop my own twice-baked sweet potato dish. While you could top the sweet potatoes with mini marshmallows, I choose to garnish with my spiced pecans (November 2013 archives). I think this one’s a keeper.

Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes

3 sweet potatoes = 6 servings
Scrub, dry and prick sweet potatoes. Bake on cookie sheet @ 400* for 1 hour. Then reduce heat to 350* to make spiced pecans and to bake filled sweet potatoes.
Set sweet potatoes on wire rack to cool so they can be handled. Cut cooled sweet potatoes in half lengthwise. Scoop the pulp from the skins, leaving 1/2″ shells.

Mash together with potato masher or hand mixer:
Sweet potato pulp;
3 Tbs butter;
1/4 cup whole milk;
Orange zest from 1 orange;
Fresh juice from 1/2 orange;
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon;
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg;
1/4 tsp kosher salt;
1/4 tsp dried rosemary;
1/4 tsp dried thyme leaves;
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper.

Sprinkle potato skins with salt + pepper. Fill potato skins with sweet potato mixture. (An ice cream or cookie scoop is a handy kitchen gadget for this task.) Garnish filled sweet potatoes with spiced pecans. Bake @ 350* for 20 minutes.

Spiced Pecans garnish

Preheat oven to 350* and brush cookie sheet lightly with canola oil. Spread 2 cups pecan halves on cookie sheet; bake for 4 minutes; rotate cookie sheet on oven rack; bake for another 4 minutes. While pecans are toasting, prepare sugar glaze and spice mix.

For sugar glaze, melt and whisk together:
2 Tbs water;
1 Tbs butter;
1 tsp brown sugar.

For spice mix, grind together with mortar & pestle or spice grinder:
1 Tbs sugar;
1+1/2 tsp smoked sea salt;
1/4 tsp Alspaugh’s Secret Seasonings (or your favorite BBQ spice mix);
1/4 tsp cinnamon;
1/4 tsp rosemary;
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper;
1/8 tsp cumin;
1/8 tsp garlic powder.

Transfer toasted pecans to mixing bowl; pour sugar glaze over pecans and toss to coat evenly; sprinkle spice mix over glazed pecans and toss to coat evenly; spread pecans back on cookie sheet to cool completely. Use some spiced pecans to garnish twice-baked sweet potatoes, and serve the rest as an irresistable snack.

Note: When the pumpkin pie is all gone, twice-baked sweet potatoes make a sweet and healthy Thanksgiving leftover breakfast. Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas!

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About Lanie Brown, Texas real estate broker

Hi, my name is Lanie Brown. Like to write, cook, bake, decorate and redecorate, celebrate, work real estate. Strive to be a Godly wife, good neighbor, giving friend. Texas Hill Country is my promised land! #sagelanereal

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