Creamy, rich sweet potatoes are mashed and flavored with bourbon then covered with a crunchy-sweet praline topping, and baked. It’s a holiday side dish that has just the right amount of special. Move aside, marshmallows.
So as many of y’all know from reading the Facebook page we had a pre-Thanksgiving Thanksgiving last week when my son and daughter-in-law came into town. They are both with the Thunderbirds team and were doing an air show locally. It was the first time in 10 years I’d had a Thanksgiving with my son and I was super excited. I made way too much food!
It did give me the opportunity to get some pictures of recipes that are traditional at my table so that I could share them with you. Bourbon sweet potatoes is one of them. Now, we did have an argument about this. My older two said I never made the sweet potatoes with bourbon or praline when they were kids and I always used marshmallows. I am pretty sure I made them that way for at least half the time.
I use fresh sweet potatoes – they grow really well around here and are usually pretty plentiful at the farmer’s market. I like to use heirlooms when I can but I’ll take what I can get. Yams work fine. Once they are whipped up with the vanilla, brown sugar, and bourbon they are just amazing. I always put plenty of black pepper in them, too. Then the praline topping is added so you end up with this crunchy topping and creamy sweet potatoes that leave a little kick of bourbon at the end. I usually just make these for the holidays but they go as well with ham as they do turkey or goose.
Use a good bourbon. Once, right after my husband and I were married I used an entire bottle of his very expensive bourbon for my holiday baking.
I love antique plates. The plate in the picture is 100 year old bone china. It’s actually a saucer to a cup and saucer set I have but it had such a pretty autumn motif that I used it. It’s Bavarian and believe me, that image does not do it justice! The color and luminosity is incredible.
I love living in an old house – I have a fireplace in the kitchen. I used to decorate for every holiday but I don’t have so much time anymore. This is as far as I’ve gotten this year. We’ll see if I can get some more done. Still, it definitely says “AUTUMN!” don’t you think? The print is from the 1940s – I’ve always loved it. When I was little I’d imagine myself walking down the road.
Anyway – give this a trial run before the big day and let me know what you think!
- 4 pounds sweet potatoes or yams
- 1/3 cup heavy cream , more as needed
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter , melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup good quality bourbon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons roasted cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
Peel potatoes, cut, and simmer in salted water until very tender.
Add them to the bowl of your mixer.
add the remaining ingredients, except topping, and whip until smooth.
Taste and adjust seasonings.
Spoon into a greased casserole dish.
Sprinkle with the pecan topping.
Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.
Melt butter in a heavy saucepan.
Add the chopped pecans and brown sugar.
Cook, stirring often, until the pecans are well coated.
Spoon the topping over the potatoes.
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