WAIT! There is still time to make a simple, delicious, killer side for Thanksgiving! And better yet, it’s not JUST for Thanksgiving – I’ve been eating this since it became cooler a few weeks ago, and it’s become my “crack” of the season. I need it. I crave it. Thank G’d it’s easy and cheap to make, or I’d be in trouble.
Matthew made a version of this for the first meal he cooked for me, way back when. He used this recipe from Alton Brown, and I was blown away. It might even be one of the reasons I married him. Since then, we have both turned to this dish when looking for a simple, but punchy and somewhat unexpected side-dish. When I make it now, I’ve cut out the butter that Alton included in his version, and have at times played with other additions like maple syrup when I was looking for more sweetness, or garlic, or chopped herbs for freshness. One of my friends posted a request for great sweet potato recipes on Facebook today, and although this was easy enough to write in a comment back to her, I decided to post here complete with pictures.
Chipotle peppers are smoked jalapeños and they can be quite spicy. This recipe calls for chopolte peppers in adobo sauce, which are a canned item, usually stocked in the Latino section of a grocery store.
2-ingredient Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Since we get a hefty amount of sweet potatoes from our CSA, I don’t peel them, and just merely scrub them with a clean nailbrush reserved for that purpose. Once cleaned, cut into similarly-sized pieces and steam until soft. I use a simple metal steamer basket in a Le Creuset Tagine or dutch oven, and it usually takes 5-10 minutes, depending on how large my potato chunks are.
While the potatoes are steaming, grab a Chipotle pepper from the can and chop roughly. If you are opening up a new can of peppers, throw the extras with all the sauce in a small 4-ounce jelly jar and store in the fridge. It will keep for a while, although it usually doesn’t since I am known to throw chipotle peppers in all sorts of things. Someone of the Facebook thread said that she purees them, then stores in a jar in the fridge, and I really like this idea, since you can just stick a spoon in and throw into whatever you have cooking. I know this isn’t the most appetizing picture. Don’t be dissuaded.
Once the potatoes are soft, transfer to a large bowl, add the chopped pepper and some of the marinade, and mash with whatever implement you have handy. The beauty of the steamed potatoes is that the moisture is retained and they should mash with very little effort.
Taste and season with salt if needed. I sometimes add olive oil for a bit of richness, but it’s not necessary. If you make this a day ahead, the spiciness will really emerge overnight, so beware and start with just one chipotle pepper. While best served warmed up, I’ve been known to eat it right from the fridge with a large spoon.