Can you believe Thanksgiving is only a week away? This year we are hosting back-to-back Thanksgiving dinners and our refrigerator is so packed, I’ve plugged in an old dorm refrigerator for the extra space, not to mention two coolers which are housing frozen turkeys I’m trying to thaw. Thank goodness I can always depend on the colder Northwest weather to be my ultimate fridge storage if need be.
Because I am a sweet potato lover, I also bought a 40 lbs box of them because they happen to be my current vegetable obsession. As it turns out, orange-fleshed sweet potatoes are an amazing source of beta-carotene which raises the body’s red blood cells due to the increased amounts of vitamin A. And if you’re wondering why vitamin A is important, it is because it helps with vision, gene production, and strengthening the body’s immune system. I love them because they are a fantastic post-workout low-glycemic food. Its slow releasing insulin effect helps with muscle recovery and assists in keeping your metabolism steady. For me, sweet potatoes provide the right type of energy I need before exercising, particularly brisk walking which I try to get in 3 miles a day, at least 3 days a week. I also learned in order to get the maximum nutritional benefit from a sweet potato; it should be prepared with a little bit of fat. Can you say cinnamon butter? Mmmmmmm.
Today I have a super delicious Spiced Sweet Potato Gratin recipe I will be preparing for next week’s gatherings. It is not overly sweet like its traditional marshmallow-brown sugar cousin. Instead, the blend of spices and turbinado (raw) sugar compliments the natural sweetness of the sweet potatoes. This recipe also happens to be gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan.
The full recipe can be found here at my weekly PBS Parents column today. Enjoy!