Sweet potatoes have recently been linked to fertility.  Odd?  Yes.  I read an article not too long ago about the Yoruba people of Nigeria.  It seems that this particular group of people consumes a high amount of white yams which has been linked to their high incidence of fraternal twins.  You can read the article in it’s entirety here.

Quirky fact about me.  Since I was a little girl, I have always wanted to have twins.  We have several sets of twins in our family and I can’t explain why but, I’ve always wanted to be a mother of twins.  When I ran across this article about the link between yams and twins, I started a strict sweet potato diet.  Even if I don’t get twins out of the deal, sweet potatoes (or yams– same thing) are a super food and provide us with vitamins such as B6, which helps fight heart disease.  I’ve gotten pretty creative with the potatoes over the past few months.  Here are a few ideas for you:

  • sweet potato fries
  • sweet potato hash for breakfast
  • shredded sweet potatoes stir-fried with spinach and shallots
  • sweet potato quesadillas with spinach, goat cheese, and roasted red peppers
  • sweet potato pancakes

This sweet potato recipe I am featuring today is one of my favorites.  Piled on these roasted potatoes is a salad of celery, cranberries, shallots, parsley, walnuts, goat cheese and a dijon vinaigrette.  The potatoes are soft and pillow-y while the salad on top has a nice crunch but the dressing adds a great acidity to balance the sweetness of the potato.  They work in perfect harmony.  I think this one is a keeper.

1 1/2 pounds sweet potato, scrubbed, unpeeled, in 3/4- to 1-inch coins
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/4 cup toasted and cooled pecan halves
1 small shallot
2 stalks celery
2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon dried cranberries or cherries
2 ounces firmish goat cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon smooth Dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Coat a large baking sheet generously with olive oil, about 1 to 2 tablespoons.

Put sweet potatoes in one layer on the oiled sheet. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes. Carefully flip each piece of potato: the undersides should be a bit dark. If they’re not, let it cook longer. Sprinkle them with additional salt and freshly ground black pepper and continue to bake for another 10 minutes or so, until the undersides match the tops.

Meanwhile, prepare your salad. Chop your pecans well, mince your shallot, chop your celery and parsley, mince cranberries if using them. Crumble your goat cheese.  In a small dish, whisk together 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon dijon. Pour the dressing over the salad.

Put the potatoes on a serving platter. Scoop a spoonful of the salad over each potato.  Eat immediately.

Recipe Source:  Smitten Kitchen

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