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Feb 27, 2010

The Wonderful World of Sweet Potatoes (pt. 1)

Growing up I was not a big fan of the sweet potato. In fact, I still don’t like them in a baked potato format. I can however, eat them as fries, in pies, and as it turn out in soups. When we were in DC a few weeks ago, we had a sweet potato soup which I really enjoyed. A quick search of the internets reveals that there are a few different styles of the sweet potato soup. There is the classic soup with nutmeg (think liquid pie) and there are several different spicy versions, chipotle and curried, for example.

Sadly this weekend, I am too busy to experiment. When I get some time, I will attempt the classic version. I will start with this recipe, and instead of using a blender, I will use my food mill. I find the food mill gives a better texture and it is worth the extra work. I will strain out the solids, leave the liquid in the stock pot and mill the solids into a separate pot.

In the past I have made a potato and leek soup, using this method; I actually learned this at a 5 day cooking school. This method, combined with real cream, not half and half, tends to make a creamier soup. Specifically, I can blend in the right amount of cooking liquid as opposed to being stuck with having to use all of it. Using a blender, as the recipe suggests, would force me to use all of the liquid and could lead to a thin soup. Also, I could cook down the liquid a little to concentrate the flavors before adding them back in.

If this goes well, I am thinking of trying the spicier versions. I am also thinking of making a roasted corn version and/or some sort of hybrid of the three. I will also finish them off with some sweet crab. I have had two soups finished this way, and both were very good. I won‘t cook the crab in, since my wife is allergic to the shell fish, I‘ll add it to the individual bowl...

Good on ya,

1 comment:

Chris said...

Have you ever tried the planked smoked mashed potatoes? I've been wanting to but haven't gotten around to it yet. The mix of sweet potatoes with regular potatoes appeals to me. I just wonder about the cedar plank smoking of them.