One of the big events that my 20s and 30s group at church does (apart from our monthly brunches which are the best!), is a “Friendsgiving” feast. It’s a way for us to get together, bring delicious food, and relax ahead of the holiday. I hosted at my mom’s house last year and cooked turkey for a group for the very first time. It turned out well, though I sort of drove myself crazy in the way that I am wont to do. This year for me was much easier. I was an attendee only – I needed to make my side and grab the two bottles we were bringing with us on the way out the door.
And oh – the side I made you guys. It popped up on my feed reader a couple weeks ago and I just knew I had to make it. Not only the promise of a simple recipe (why yes – I did have nearly all the ingredients at home already!), but one that turned out to be super yummy as well. I don’t know why I’m surprised – Budget Bytes hasn’t let me down yet.
Why am I so excited about it? Because it was maple (as in syrup) brown butter (gahh – love the stuff) mashed (fave preparation!) sweet potatoes (the candy of the vegetable world). I mean – how could it be better? It can’t. That’s it. And looking at the fact that this is now my third brown butter recipe on the blog, I almost feel like it gets it’s own tag (oh look – there it is!). Because it’s amazing stuff and makes things taste that much more interesting.
And if you’re wondering – the recipe doesn’t turn out as sweet as you might think. Obviously it’s a little sweet, but these sweet potatoes are not cloying the way that they can be when there are marshmallows involved. It’s a much more natural depth of character for the potatoes that just makes you happy to be putting them in your mouth. Plus – it doesn’t hurt that the total prep time for this recipe is about 45 minutes (slower than it says on the original website, but perhaps I’m just slow at peeling potatoes). A perfect side to bring to your own Thanksgiving feast!
Maple Brown Butter Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Yield: 8 generous side servings
3 lbs. sweet potatoes
6 Tbsp butter (if you use unsalted, add a pinch of salt)
¼ cup real maple syrup
¼ tsp cinnamon
⅛ tsp nutmeg
⅛ tsp ground cloves
¼ cup chopped pecans
- Peel and dice the sweet potatoes. Add them to a large pot and cover with water. Place a lid on the pot and bring the water up to a boil over high heat. Boil the potatoes until they are very tender when pierced with a fork (5-10 minutes depending on the size of your sweet potato cubes). Drain the sweet potatoes and then mash until mostly smooth. Set the mashed sweet potatoes aside.
- Cut the butter into equal-sized pieces. Place the butter in a light colored skillet or pot. Place the skillet over medium-low heat and let it melt and being to foam. Continue to cook the butter, stirring constantly, until the butter solids begin to brown. Watch the butter closely once it begins to change color and remove it from the heat when it reaches a deep brown color and smells nutty or caramel-like. Immediately pour the butter into a separate bowl to stop the cooking process.
- Stir the maple syrup into the butter. Pour the maple syrup and butter mixture into the mashed sweet potatoes. Reserve 1-2 Tbsp of the maple brown butter to drizzle over top as a garnish [note: I forgot to do this – it turned out alright]. Also add the cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves to the mashed potatoes, then stir to combine. Taste the sweet potatoes and adjust the syrup, spices, or salt if needed. Sprinkle the chopped pecans over top and drizzle the remaining maple brown butter just before serving.