Friday, November 4, 2011

Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Cilantro Vinaigrette

The most popular question visitors asked Garden Chef Megan McCarthy on the weekend of October 9 was: Is a yam the same thing as a sweet potato?

Answer: No. They are from different families. The sweet potato is from the Morning Glory family and originally hails from Central America. The true yam is the tuber of a tropical vine and originally hails from Africa.

There are two dominant types of sweet potato: one has a thin, light yellow skin with pale yellow flesh which is not sweet and has a dry texture, similar to a white baking potato; the other has darker, orange to reddish skin (often called "yam" in error) with a vivid orange, sweet flesh and a moist texture. There are over 200 different varietals of sweet potato in the world. In this recipe, Garden Chef Megan uses four varietals (including ‘Porto Rico’ and ‘Nancy Hall’ from the Edible Garden) for an assortment of color, texture, and taste.

Keep the skins on to maximize the nutritional value of this recipe; however, choose organic potatoes when possible. Potatoes do absorb many pesticides from the ground, and most toxins will end up in the skins of a potato.

Chef Megan grills the parboiled potatoes to finish the flavor and add those lovely grill marks. Married with the Cilantro Vinaigrette, the end result is a mouthwatering combination of tangy and sweet. Pair this delightful side dish with steak or fish. You won’t be able to stop saying, “Just one more.”

Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Cilantro Vinaigrette

4 medium sweet potatoes
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Wash and wedge cut sweet potatoes lengthwise, leaving skins on. In large pot, cover sweet potatoes with cold, salted water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 minutes until potatoes are softened. Drain and rinse with cold water. Lightly coat grill or grill pan with cooking spray and heat to medium-high. Arrange sweet potato wedges on grill pan and cook until grill lines appear before turning on next side of wedge.

Whisk together lime juice, salt, and pepper and slowly add olive oil. Stir in cilantro and season to taste. Arrange grilled sweet potatoes on platter and drizzle with cilantro vinaigrette to serve.

Discover more Garden Chef recipes here.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing recipe's!!! Love the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Wanted to eat the Kale greens right there, but I didn't. Lol..


    Anisa Palmer