Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Aunt Bet Bet's Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole is a holiday tradition around here.  For both Thanksgiving and Christmas is a an obligatory side dish, no question.  Sweet Potato farmers throughout the region depend on our holiday feast.  First thing to do is procure 7 pounds of Sweet Potatoes, wash them and then roast them in the oven for an hour and fifteen minutes at 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
This will soften the Sweet Potatoes, but also convert the starches in the Sweet Potatoes into sugars.  After the Sweet Potatoes are roasted you can smell the sugars, and some of them will have what looks like liquid brown sugar coming out of them.
Next we'll allow the Sweet Potatoes to cool for a while and then peel them.  Watch for dark spots and remove them, and also you may find some fibrous tissue just inside the peels, remove that also.  We want to take out anything that would detract from the mouth feel.  The finished product should have a light mousse like consistency.  After the Sweet Potatoes are peeled we'll put them in the mixing bowl, and gather up the rest of the ingredients.
Holiday dishes should all use fresh ingredients, no orange juice out of a box here.  We're going to squeeze some fresh Orange juice, and whenever I add fresh juice, I will also add the zest of the Oranges.  This is how you get the brightest flavors, and most compliments.
Now we'll add the the rest of the ingredients, which are;  half a cup of melted butter, half a cup of sugar, half a cup of fresh squeezed Orange Juice, the zest of two oranges finely diced, half a cup of Whipping Cream, and a tablespoon of Cinnamon.  Everybody goes into the mixing bowl to get whipped.  Obviously you don't want to start this process with the mixer on high, or you might wind up with Sweet potatoes covering everything.
I start the mixer on low, and let it run for several minutes, then kick the speed up a couple of notches, and let it run a few more minutes.  The idea is to whip this mixture to make it as light as possible.  We'll get the mixer speed up as high as possible without slinging Sweet Potatoes all over.  I mixed this batch for over ten minutes.  While the Sweet Potatoes are mixing we'll prepare the topping.
The topping is one cup of Brown sugar, half a cup of cake Flour, and a third of a cup of melted butter.  We'll mix those together to make a crumble topping for the Sweet Potatoes.  The crumble is applied to the top of the casserole before baking.
There, now we have the casserole mixed, and the topping made, all we have to do is assemble the pieces.  Pick out a festive casserole dish and add the Sweet Potato base.
Then add the crumble to the top of the Sweet Potatoes.
Then we'll bake the Sweet Potato Casserole for 25 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
And that's it, ready for feasting.  i usually prepare this the day before, refrigerate it overnight, and reheat for the festivities the next day.  The flavors meld in the refrigerator overnight, so it will taste better the next day.

No comments:

Post a Comment