The Tender, Useful Sweet Potatoes!

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes – native to America

Sweet potatoes are a traditional root vegetable that are native to America, and were first introduced to Europe and other parts of the world when Christopher Columbus returned to Europe after the discovery of the ‘New World’ in 1492. Over the years this gorgeous vegetable has become an addition to many traditional meals including Thanksgiving, and is used in many dishes from sweet to savoury.

Sweet potatoes are in season during November and December so it is no wonder that they are many popular recipes using them to serve at the Thanksgiving and Christmas tables. They can be found in supermarkets during the rest of the year, but if you really want to try them at their best, buy them during November and December to truly benefit from their flavours.

Sweet potatoes are not only a fantastically versatile vegetable to cook with, but they also contain an abundance of nutrients and vitamins that make it a great addition to your diet as well. These highly nutritious vegetables are rich in beta-carotene, proteins, antioxidants and vitamin C.

Beta carotene is the pigment that gives the sweet potatoes their distinctive orange colour and presents itself as vitamin A which is great for your skin and helps to build up your immune system. The proteins found in sweet potatoes are great for building and repairing tissues in the body. Antioxidants found in these vegetables are great for detoxifying the body’s system and promoting good health. Vitamin C, also found in sweet potatoes, is great for curing the common cold, strengthening bones, and supports your cardiovascular system.

How to cook sweet potatoes?

There are many different methods for preparing and cooking sweet potatoes. Depending on what you use them for, you might want to consider cooking them in the healthiest way possible so as to benefit from all of its nutrients in the best way. Boiling sweet potatoes and then mashing them still means that the consumer can reap the benefits of all that vitamin A! Stir frying is another reasonably healthy option in comparison to roasting or baking.

Many chefs would agree that sweet potatoes are wonderfully versatile. Used in both main courses and desserts all over the world, these vegetables can be adapted to suit any dish. A sweet potato bhuna masala has a fantastically spicy yet sweet taste thanks to this great vegetable, and sweet potatoes used as a side dish with roasted venison or sea bass is a beautifully gourmet dish you should definitely try. It also goes really well in casseroles too! Everyone’s heard of the sweet potato pie, so try this maybe adding meringue and chocolate sauce and you’ll realise just how flexible this vegetable can be. Follow Recipebridge to find some easy and scrumptious recipes for sweet potatoes.

Please feel free to tell us about your favourite recipes with sweet potatoes –do you prepare them in sweet or savoury dishes? Tweet us or post your recipes using sweet potatoes to our Facebook page!

Posted by RecipeBridge Staff Writer December 8th 2011
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