Today my blog journey through a vegan Thanksgiving dinner continues. Yesterday I shared a dessert. Today I’m sharing a side dish that could double as dessert. It’s true. Invite me to dinner at your house, and after the meal, plop a plate of these down in front of me with a cup of tea, and you’ll hear no complaints. They are named after a classic dessert for a reason.
Having said that, these aren’t terrible in the nutrition department. They’re a little sweet, and a little rich, but it is Thanksgiving, after all. I had intended these to be a bit lighter than they are, but I gave up after a frustrated phone conversation with my mom. I ended up adapting one of her old Thanksgiving recipes after grilling her on what people generally look for in a Thanksgiving sweet potato dish. Marshmallows were out. Pecans? Other nuts? Lots of sugar? I was adamant that I wanted to keep these on the light side, and therefor I’d have none of that. She reminded me that it is Thanksgiving. Right. And her favorite brûléed sweet potato recipe wasn’t all that sweet or heavy, even in it’s original, non-vegan form.
I’m glad she talked me into it. I quickly remembered that brûléed sweet potatoes are my favorite sweet potatoes, but you know what? The vegan version is even better, and by better I mean tastier, because veganizing creamy dairy-based recipes is always a good excuse to include coconut milk, and coconut milk makes most things extra delicious.
As far as added sweetness, well, that serves a purpose here, and that purpose isn’t just sweetness. Sprinkle a little brown sugar on top, stick these under the broiler for 5, and you’ve got the bubbly beginnings of a crunchy caramel crust. So worth it.
- 2 lbs. sweet potatoes (about 2 large) peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 2 tbsp. maple syrup
- 1½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- Place sweet potatoes in medium saucepan and cover with water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower heat and allow to simmer until potatoes are soft, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and drain. Return to saucepan.
- Mash potatoes until smooth using a potato masher. You could optionally use an electric mixer if you like your sweet potatoes very smooth and fluffy. Add coconut milk, maple syrup, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mash some more to blend completely.
- Transfer to 9 inch x 9 inch baking dish coated with cooking spray or 10 inch cast iron skillet. Sprinkle brown sugar in an even layer over top.
- Place under broiler on top oven rack. Broil until brown sugar is completely melted and bubbly, about 5 minutes, being careful not to burn.
- Allow to sit for a few minutes before serving, to allow brown sugar to solidify and form a crust.
Save time the day of serving by preparing the mashed sweet potatoes the day before. Warm in the microwave or stovetop the day of serving, transfer to baking vessel, top with brown sugar and broil.
Adapted from Cooking Light's Brûléed Mashed Sweet Potatoes.