Sweet Potatoes: The sweet and healthy side of winters

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Sweet Potatoes: The sweet and healthy side of winters

Sweet potato recipes can be your go-to snacks this winter

Sweet Potatoes: The sweet and healthy side of winters

Winters are the best time to indulge in Sweet potatoes(Shakarkandi). Steamed and spiked with some lime juice and chaat masala, sweet potato is a popular street snack in India. Their creamy texture warms you up from inside out. Packed with plenty of flavour and nutrition, this super spud can easily charm you with its simplicity. The best thing about sweet potatoes is that they don't take much to cook and are very tasty. Roast, grill, fry, bake or simply steam them. They are perfect in salads, soups and even as sides.

The cultivation of sweet potatoes dates back to 750 BC and it has been considered as one of the oldest foods known to man. It is believed that Spanish and Portuguese explorers introduced potatoes to the Asians. In some parts of the United States, it is regarded as a staple food and is known to have originated somewhere in Central America and are known as 'yams'.

According to the Healthline website, its dark orange flesh is a valuable source of beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant that converts to vitamin A in our body which is known to strengthen eyesight and the immune system. They are almost fat-free and low in calories, but high in sugar. They are loaded with B6 vitamins and potassium which makes them great for your heart. In fact, they are known to naturally lower high blood pressure levels and regulate your heartbeat.

You may have not known this, but sweet potatoes offer great beauty benefits. Vitamin A acts as a natural anti-inflammatory which may help in getting rid of bacteria that cause acne. Recently, it has become popular as an anti-ageing food as the Vitamin A that it contains helps to regenerate collagen in the body. Collagen is known to maintain youthful skin and prevent loss of skin elasticity. It also contains Vitamin E which promotes skin health.

While buying sweet potatoes, you should look for ones without any cracks, bruises and soft spots. A good way of storing these and keeping them fresh is to keep them loose in a brown paper bag with multiple holes in a cool, dark and away from the heat.

Here are four Sweet potatoes dishes you might like!

Shakarkandi ki Chaat

Credit: Cook with Manali

The good old shakarkandi ki chaat! Make it fresh at home with chaat masala, chillies and lime juice. The sweet and sour flavour will leave your taste buds wanting more.

Also read | 5 Home-Made Drinks to boost your metabolism

Ingredients-

  • Sweet potato
  • Chillies
  • Lime juice
  • Onion
  • Tomato
  • black pepper powder
  • amchur powder
  • rock salt (edible and food grade)

How to make Shakarkandi Chaat

Mix all the ingredients together, adjusting spices according to taste and serve.

Sweet Potatoes with Black Sesame

Credit: DMH

It's time to deviate from the usual as here comes a dessert made with sweet potatoes, caramel and black sesame seeds. It offers a taste that lingers.

Ingredients

  • Sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • Oil to fry
  • black sesame seeds
  • Fruit slices, to garnish
  • For the sugar syrup/soy caramel:
  • soy
  • Water
  • Sugar

How to Make Candied Sweet Potatoes with Black Sesame

  • In a pan add oil and fry the sweet potato cubes till golden brown.
  • In a pan add soy sauce, water and sugar. Cook till sugar melts. Keep stirring continuously till the syrup is light brown in colour (Resembles the colour of caramel).
  • Add the fried sweet potatoes. Cook till well coated.
  • Add the black sesame seeds. Toss well.
  • Garnish with some kiwi slices or any fruit of your choice. Serve.

Root Vegetable Tikkis

Credit: Sanjana Feasts

Perfect with your cup of tea, these crisp tikkis are made with sweet potatoes, yam and potatoes. The subtle and soft texture will easily win you over.

Ingredients

  • Sweet potato and baked potatoes
  • Garam masala powder, roasted
  • Cumin powder, roasted
  • Dried pomegranate seeds
  • Minced ginger
  • Onions, chopped
  • Green chilli, chopped
  • Coriander leaves, chopped
  • Olive oil
  • Fresh bread crumbs
  • Cornflour

How to Make Root Vegetable Tikkis

  1. Scrub, wash and pat dry the root vegetables.
  2. Season with a little salt, pepper and olive oil.
  3. Bake the sweet potatoes and the potatoes for 35 minutes wrapped in aluminium foil in the oven.
  4. Mash the sweet potato, with a fork or a masher.
  5. Add a little salt, garam masala powder, cumin powder, dried pomegranate powder, chopped
  6. Onions, minced ginger, chopped green chillies, coriander leaves, olive oil and bread crumbs.
  7. Give it a little mix and add the cornstarch.
  8. Refrigerate for a few minutes.
  9. Shape as desired, and pan fry with olive oil using a non-stick pan.
  10. Cook to a golden brown on both sides.
  11. Serve with chutney of your choice.

Hassel Back Sweet Potatoes

Credit: LandOO

A perfect snack to accompany a get-together with family and friends. Hassel back sweet potatoes are easy and can be made with simple ingredients. Prepare this sweet and salty snack to relish at a sunny Sunday brunch.

Ingredients of Hassel back Sweet Potatoes

  • sweet potatoes
  • butter, unsalted
  • brown sugar
  • pure vanilla extract
  • ground cinnamon
  • Himalayan pink salt/rock salt

How to Make Hasselback Sweet Potatoes

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Make thin slices into the potato about 1/16-inch thick, stopping before you cut all the way through. (Placing a chopstick on either side of the potato while you slice it can help stop the blade before it cuts all the way through.)
  • Put each potato on a separate sheet of foil. Shape the foil around the potatoes to wrap them, but leave the tops open and exposed.
  • Put the potatoes on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Melt the butter, swirling occasionally, until browned for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Stir in the brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Drizzle the butter mixture over the potatoes and pinch the foil together on top to seal the potato inside.
  • Bake for 45 minutes, then let cool for a few moments. Remove the potatoes from the foil, put them on a serving platter and drizzle with the sauce leftover in each foil packet.
  • Sprinkle some nuts while serving.

With winter, come sweet potatoes. sweet potato recipes can be your go-to snacks this winter. Enjoy Winter