Has your mom ever gone on a cooking strike? Mine did and it sucked. I was probably 12 when my mom lovingly made a healthy alternative to the creamy regular mashed potatoes my Dad and I loved. She tried sneaking sweet potatoes on to our plates and after a few bites I was disgusted. At the time I did not understand how amazing sweet potatoes were. Long story short my Dad and I started secretly feeding the dogs our sweet potatoes under the table because in our house if you complained or didn’t finish vegetables it was double portions. Mom caught us and picked up the bowl and began flinging spoonfuls of the orange mash at my face. The dogs were heaven! It was right then that the first ever Karen Food Strike started. It was lots of Taco Bell and soup for us. So needless to say every time I now enjoy sweet potatoes I think of that story.
I still have a hard time with sweet potatoes when they are really sweet. I do not think I’ll ever be a big fan of the traditional dish with marshmallows. But when they are paired with savory ingredients and roasted or fried I’m in heaven. This weekend I tried a few new ingredients and loved the cheesy roasted flavor.
Roasted Sweet Potato Mash
- 4-5 large sweet potatoes
- olive oil (to rub potatoes)
- head of garlic
- 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles (plus some for topping)
- 1/2 stick butter
- red pepper flakes (to taste)
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp each salt and pepper
- Optional- fresh or dried herbs of choice- rosemary and oregano would be great
- Optional- crispy bacon crumbles for topping
- Heat oven to 400
- Prick potatoes all the way around with a fork and rub in olive oil (if large and cut in half to speed up cooking time)
- Place potatoes on foil lined baking sheet
- Trim the top of the garlic head off to expose all cloves and rub with olive oil, salt and pepper
- Add garlic to tray with potatoes
- Place tray in oven for 30 minutes, remove garlic from tray (if its looks browned enough)
- Flip the potatoes over and put back in the oven for about 30 more minutes or until tender and skins beginning to fall off
- Once garlic has cooled a bit, squeeze the cloves out of the peel (should pop out easy if roasted enough) and chop all the cloves
- Add garlic, blue cheese, butter, spices to mixing bowl
- Remove potatoes from oven and cool until you can remove the skins. The skins should peel easily if roasted enough.
- Scoop the potato chunks on top of the cheese mixture in a mixing bowl and mix until desired consistency. For a chunkier mash, you can simply fork the mixture. For creamier mash mix well in blender or mixer.
- To make the mash creamier you could add about 1/4 cup sour cream, milk, cheese, mayo, etc. Lots of options!
- Scoop your mash in to a bowl and top with blue cheese and bacon crumbles (optional). If you added herbs you can add a few for garnish as well.
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