Food of the Week: Sweet Potatoes
I love sweet potatoes, but I haven’t alway loved them. I remember the first sweet potato French fry that I had back in 2003 in Monterey. I hated them. Now, I could each them nearly every day. One of my favorite recipes for sweet potatoes is for savory sweet potato cakes from Mediterranean Paleo Cooking. This is a great recipe. We usually just bake them and add plenty of Kerrygold butter (grass-fed). Jennifer Tyler Lee recommends mashed sweet potatoes or crispy sweet potato fries. Yum!
- Sweet potatoes belong to the morning glory family and are not at all related to potatoes (nightshade family).
- They are native to Central America/northern South America. Colobus brought sweet potatoes back to Spain with him, but those original sweet potatoes were similar to carrots, not like our modern sweet potatoes.
- Their glycemic index is 45 (sugar is 100). The glycemic index of potatoes by comparison is 75-100. The glycemic index is a measurement of how much a food raises the blood sugar.
- They are rich source of antioxidants, especially the carotenes.
- In the supermarket, most yams are simply marked as yams, but are truly just another variety of sweet potatoes. True yams are hardly ever sold in the United States.
- If you’re looking to grow a very nutrient dense variety of sweet potato, opt for the Carolina Ruby.
- Do not store uncooked sweet potatoes in the fridge.
- Boiling sweet potatoes reduces their antioxidant value, while steaming, roasting, or baking does not.
- The skin is more nutritious than the flesh.
- Good source of vitamins C, B2, B6, and manganese, copper, biotin, and pantothenic acid.
- Good source of fiber.
- In animal studies, they have been shown to help stabilize blood sugar levels.
From: The 52 New Foods Challenge by Jennifer Tyler Lee, Encyclopedia of Healing Foods by Michael Murray, Joseph Pizzorno, and Lara Pizzorno, and Eating on the Wild Side by Jo Robinson.