Ok, so I know what you’re thinking. You took one look at the featured image and thought, that can’t be garlic mashed sweet potatoes. It’s not orange! And the truth is I was hoping for a nice, lovely orange shade when I bought my sweet potatoes at the store. I was very surprised when I started peeling to discover that inside they were the same color as regular potatoes! I thought, are these yams? And then realized that I really don’t know the difference between a yam and a sweet potato.
So here are the facts for all you curious folk like me (or just skip down for the recipe!). Apparently, the truth is that what I’ve been calling yams are most likely sweet potatoes, since they come in many varieties and colors. The flesh of a sweet potato can be orange, white or even purple. True yams are generally imported from the Caribbean, and are rough and scaly with pale flesh that is very low in beta-carotene, unlike sweet potatoes. Although I wasn’t very careful when looking at what I was buying, after checking the skin of my root veggies (smooth and not scaly) I’m pretty sure I ended up with a sweet potato with white flesh. Now I’m wondering if I’ve ever even tasted a real yam before!
Knowing it was a sweet potato didn’t lessen my disappointment about the color, but at least the recipe still turned out delicious. Sweet potatoes are incredibly healthy. They are a good source of beta carotene, Vitamins A and C, and are full of manganese, calcium, potassium, fiber, Vitamin B6 and iron. They also have a lower glycemic index than regular potatoes, so they don’t affect blood sugar as much. I’ve always enjoyed these root veggies and they can be made savory or sweet. There’s nothing much more heavenly than a baked sweet potato with almond butter on it. This recipe, featuring savory garlic, is a perfect choice for a low-fat, healthy vegan option for the holidays.
Garlic Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 1/2 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
- 1 Tbs vegan buttery spread (I like Earth Balance)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-2 Tbs non-dairy sour cream (optional)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
In a large pot, cover sweet potatoes in water and boil until tender, approximately 8-10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Return the pot to the stove. Melt buttery spread and sauté garlic until golden. Remove from heat and return sweet potatoes to the pan. Add non-dairy milk and non-dairy sour cream if using. Mash until smooth and creamy and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
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