Every holiday I am called on by the fam to make one of my better (if not best) dishes. Not only is it delish but I love to make it just as much as I love to eat it: Candied Yams. Also used interchangeably with sweet potatoes, although the color of yams is darker and goes a long way in the presentation.
I actually learned how to make it from my Navy cook ex of a husband while we were married…guess exes are good for something! (Hi Reggie) Haha! Anywho, I have managed to innovate from the original recipe over time, maybe deleting and adding a few things but the way I go about making it is basically still the same. I realize most people make the dish in the oven and possibly add a few more ingredients like eggs, salt, flour and water. I make mine on the stove top. It is easy, breezy and simple, the perfect route for this non-cooking cook.
So, in honor of Thanksgiving, I am sharing the recipe and some pics. Try it during your next holiday potluck at work or for your family affair. Unless confident with your cooking, may I suggest taking the time to perfect it in a practice run first before serving it to others.
If you like great food that is easy to make but tastes so good it comes across as being more difficult to make than it really is, this one is for you and you will loooove it!
- 3 pounds of raw sweet potatoes
- 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter
- 1 pack of large or small marshmallows
- 1 to 1/2 cup of pecans (chop them up if they come whole)
Peel and slice or cut uncooked sweet potatoes (yams) into 1/4 inch thick chunks and layer into prepared dish.
Place sweet potatoes into a pot, set on the stove at medium setting and pour half of the sugar over them, bring to a boil, cover, stirring occasionally until sugar is well dissolved into a sauce. As the yams soften pour the remaining half of the sugar. Add the butter; cook and stir in until butter is completely melted. Pour the vanilla extract, cinnamon and nutmeg over the sweet potatoes and gently toss to coat all of the pieces; taste and adjust for seasonings as needed. Cook until sweet potatoes are soft to bite into.
Select one of your glass serving dishes and line the bottom with half of the marshmallows from the package and maybe half of the chopped up pieces of the pecans. I like to sprinkle a little pre-made mixture of half cinnamon and half sugar over this as well for texture. Pour the sweet potatoes evenly over the marshmallows. Make another layer of the marshmallows, followed by a layer of the sweet potatoes. The sweet potatoes will still be warm so you will find that the marshmallows melt right into them. Sprinkle the top with the remaining pecan pieces, the cinnamon/sugar mixture and a few strategically place marshmallows if you desire for presentation.
This does not have to be exact but use the recipe as a guideline. Play with it! Mine changes slightly every time I make it so it is all about getting the right flavor. For me cooking is definitely all about the moment and the art of creating something good, I hope, not perfection. Have fun!
Live a blessed and blissed out life! Happy Thanksgiving!