Sweet Potato Carrot Puree
Sweet Potato Carrot Puree is a deliciously sweet and savory side dish for anytime, but most of all it is PERFECT for Thanksgiving dinner. I don’t know about you, but I am all about the Thanksgiving “sides”. There is a reason why I only make turkey once a year, but this dish I could make every week. This recipe, a favorite of mine for many years, is from one of my favorite cookbooks, The Silver Palate Cookbook, which was one of the first (if not THE FIRST) cookbooks that I ever got. It was a gift for my wedding shower, almost 25 years ago (!), and though I don’t remember many of those gifts today (I’m sure the towels have been demoted to rags by now, the glassware sets, fractured), this dog-eared and spattered book remains in a prominent place on my shelf.
This Sweet Potato Carrot Puree is so simple to prepare and reheats perfectly so it’s a great make-ahead dish. Pictured above are the simple ingredients: half carrots, half sweet potatoes, mellowed with butter and sour cream and spiced with cayenne and nutmeg. This recipe is easily adaptable and you could use non-dairy sour-cream or yogurt, margarine instead of butter, or any spices that you like for flavor.
The sweet potato flesh, first baked with the skins, in the oven until tender, is scooped out of the skin and straight into the food processor. While the sweet potatoes are roasting, the carrots are cooked on the stove top, and then all the vegetables are pureed with the rest of ingredients until smooth. You know I love my food processor, and for this recipe it really makes the lightest, creamiest puree of vegetables. I’m sure that you could use a stand mixer, whipping the puree on high speed, with similar results.
The addition of carrots with the sweet potatoes is genius for several reasons. The carrots lighten the texture of the sweet potato puree, and also add a depth of flavors without altering the color of the finished dish. The result is a pure orange, uber-creamy side dish that brightens up any dinner, lunch or brunch plate.
The original recipe says that it serves 6, but actually it made 2.5 quarts, and though this is delicious, I’m not sure I know anyone who would eat a whole pint in one sitting. I’d guess that it serves more like 10-12 since we’ve been eating it for days.
I have made this a day (or even two days) ahead for Thanksgiving, stored it in an ovenproof dish and reheated in the oven before serving with perfect results. This is great news whether you are hosting or just “bringing a side dish” to your family gathering (or “Friendsgiving”) because there is no need to whip this up at the last minute. It also makes a great portable dish.
On the first night, we had sweet potato carrot puree as a side dish for venison tenderloin with wild mushrooms and green beans. We also had it reheated with rotisserie chicken the next night, and with eggs for brunch on the weekend.
I wish I could give you all a scoop of this right now so you can taste how light and creamy it is. Since I can’t, I’ll just stop talking about it so you can make it yourself.
If you’re not cooking for a crowd, you may want to half this recipe.
- 2 Lb. sweet potatoes (about 4 large)
- 1 Lb. carrots, peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces
- 12 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 1/2 cup sour cream, creme fraiche or plain yogurt
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp or generous pinch cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Scrub the potatoes and make a small deep slit in the top of each, place potatoes on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 1 hour, or until tender when pierced with a fork.
- Meanwhile, peel and trim the carrots and cut them into 1 inch lengths. Put them in a saucepan with the water, sugar, and 2 Tbsp butter. Set over medium heat, bring to a boil and cook uncovered until the water has evaporated and the carrots begin to sizzle in the butter, about 30 minutes. The carrots should be tender. If not, add a little additional water and cook until carrots are done and no liquid remains.
- Scrape out the flesh of the sweet potatoes and combine with the carrots in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add remaining butter and sour cream (or creme fraiche, yogurt) and process until very smooth.
- Add nutmeg, cayenne, salt and pepper to taste, and process some more until all is uber-creamy and blended very well.
- To reheat: transfer to an ovenproof serving dish and cover with foil. Heat in preheated 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes, or until steaming hot.