Add some spice, a little crunch to your sweet potatoes

By Jim Bailey

The glaze that forms in this dish is phenomenal! A perfect accompaniment to all protein bearing down on your holiday table and throughout the cold, blustery season ahead. I dice the sweet potatoes about an inch in size, but larger is fine as well.

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large (1 pound) yam or sweet potato, peeled and diced
1/2 cup chopped, cooked chestnuts (see NOTE)
1 cup vegetable or chicken broth
1/4 cup raisins, dried cranberries or dried cherries
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. When hot, add potato and chestnuts, stirring well.

Cook, while still stirring a few times, for about 4 minutes, or until potatoes are starting to soften.

Add remainder of ingredients, stir to combine and reduce to medium heat.

Allow to gently simmer for about 10 minutes, or until everything is cooked and the dish has thickened.

Remove to serve hot.

NOTE: Save yourself the time of boiling, shelling and baking fresh chestnuts this season by purchasing jarred chestnuts that are all ready for you to chop. They are sold in water, so no other tastes are distinguishable. You can alternately use a can of water chestnuts chopped up as well. Bamboo shoots or onions are good substitutions too.

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Filed Under: Community and Arts LifeThe Yankee Chef

About the Author: Jim Bailey is a third generation Yankee Chef, New England food historian and newspaper columnist. His first cookbook, simply titled The Yankee Chef, has been published. He welcomes all feedback, questions or comments at

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