From Bon Appetit; November 1994
If you’re watching calories, use decreased amounts of butter, nectar and sugar. Also, you can use this as a healthy version of dessert.
5 lbs red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams)
4-6 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
4 large firm but ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, cut into 1/3 inch-thick slices
1/2 – 3/4 cup pear nectar
2-4 Tbsp sugar
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp (generous) ground cardamom
- Preheat oven to 400. Butter 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Pierce potatoes in several places with fork. Place on baking sheet; bake until very tender when pierced with knife, about 1 hour. Remove from oven. Reduce temperature to 350.
- Meanwhile, melt 1-2 Tbsp butter in heavy large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pears; sauté until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add ¾ cup nectar; bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until pears are very tender, adding more nectar if mixture sticks to skillet and stirring often, about 4 minutes. Transfer to processor and puree.
- Peel sweet potatoes; place in large bowl of electric mixer. Add 2-4 Tbsp butter; beat until smooth. Mix in pear puree, sugar, cinnamon and cardamom. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to prepared dish (Can be prepared 1 day ahead – if so, cover and chill.)
- Bake potatoes uncovered until just heated through, about 20 minutes.
Other variations I’ve tried include using rosemary instead of cardamom, or a banana instead of one of the pears.
Serves 8 at about 220 – 260 calories per serving – depending on quantity of nectar, sugar and butter.
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