Stella’s Southern Sweet Potatoes

I don’t know about you, but sweet potatoes are one of the most evocative comfort foods I know. I don’t eat them that often, but they always take me right back home to East Texas, and bring with their hearty sweetness a rush of memories. My maternal great-grandmother, Tollie, had a huge kitchen garden, and my mother was lucky enough to be raised eating fresh, homegrown produce harvested right out of Granny’s back yard.

Most of the sweet potatoes grown in Texas are of the Beauregard variety, and they’re harvested just when the leaves start to change–in East Texas, that means October or even November. As elsewhere in the United States, mashed sweet potatoes are a Thanksgiving delicacy. Though we now eat them year-round, this buttery, sweet, bourbon-infused version is generally only made for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

If you want to be really authentically Southern, top them with roasted marshmallows!

Does this look familiar?

Does this look familiar?

6 large sweet potatoes
2 heaping Tbsp butter
2 heaping Tbsp brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
~ 1 measure of bourbon
marshmallows (optional)

1. Peel and cut potatoes into small chunks and boil in a large pot until cooked and mushy.

2. Drain pot, leaving potatoes in; mix in remaining ingredients and mash to desired consistency.

3. Spoon mix into a greased, oven-safe glass casserole dish and bake for about a half hour at about 350°.

4. Add top layer of marshmallows if desired, broiling briefly so they are browned and crunchy.

5. Serve with iced tea, collard greens, and a snarky attitude.

Serves at least 4, with leftovers.

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