Sunday, November 30, 2014

Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Coconut Cream & Thai Flavors

Need a feisty and fun sweet potato recipe for your holiday table that won't give you a sugar crash before the pumpkin pie is served? Then this recipe is for you. Don't get me wrong, I won't turn down a serving of marshmallow covered sweet potatoes. But this dish is a nice change from the often cloyingly sweet marshmallow dish. Thai-inspired whipped sweets will jazz up a holiday turkey dinner. It's light, creamy, spicy and sweet. The chili and lime energize the sweet potatoes with fresh flavor.            

When it comes to Thanksgiving, it's all about enjoying the day and being relaxed. My mood is laid back. Why stress yourself out? Why not take it easy? Maybe even go for a peaceful stroll. I often make this side dish for Christmas too.

It's an easy holiday side dish that can be prepared in the morning or even a day or two ahead. It can also be reheated in the microwave without sacrificing taste. With all the other Thanksgiving dishes being prepared, it's a life-saver.   

Whipped Sweet Potato Recipe

Makes about 4 cups 

Some Notes:

If you don't want to roast a chili pepper then swap it for a little sriracha sauce or a pinch of dried ground red pepper. Removing the seeds and veins of chili peppers dampens the heat. I keep the spice level at a bare minimum to please everyone. It's more of a background flavor.

Vietnamese cinnamon is bold and rich. I adore it. I find it at Penzeys Spices

If you want to swap the lime for an orange, go right ahead. Have fun and make it your own recipe.     

I use Trader Joe's Coconut Cream in this recipe. It's rich and thick. There are other brands of coconut cream in the supermarket, usually by the Latin foods. If you can't find it, then swap it for a couple of tablespoons of coconut cream taken from the top of a can of full fat coconut milk. Don't shake the can before opening. 


  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • All or part of one Thai or jalapeno chili pepper  
  • 1 lime, zest half of it and remove the zest.
  • 1/2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated. (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons of coconut cream or more if you're feeling decadent. (see notes for explanation) 
  • A few pinches of cinnamon. I use Vietnamese cinnamon. 
  • Drizzle of honey (optional)
  • Sea salt to taste
  • For serving: flaky sea salt or grey celtic salt, drizzle of honey, sprinkle of cinnamon


Preheat the oven to 400. Cover a baking pan with foil and wrap the sweet potatoes in foil. Poke them with a fork in a few places. Bake them until they're easily pierced with a knife. Place the peppers on the baking sheet with the sweet potatoes and bake them for about 5-15 minutes, depending on whether you're using a tiny Thai pepper or a jalapeno pepper. Take the pepper out when the skin is soft and just starting to brown in places. Thai peppers are very tiny and roast in about 5-7 minutes.

Once cool enough to handle, remove the skin from the sweet potatoes and mince the chili pepper. Put the chili pepper and potatoes in a bowl. Mash them with a potato masher until smooth, adding sea salt to taste. With a fork or a spoon, whip in the coconut cream, a few pinches of cinnamon, the lime zest, a few squeezes of lime juice and ginger (if using). I use a microplane zester to grate the ginger into the bowl. Serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon, some flaky or grey celtic sea salt, another drizzle of honey.

Bon Appetit!

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