Friday, January 1, 2010

Friday Food Fact: Sweet Potatoes

In comes the new year and along with it a new addition to the 'Food & Water' blog, the 'Friday Food Fact'. As many of y'all know one of my big goals is to help people live a better life through better nutrition. In order for us to become healthier and eat better we must first know what foods are good for us to eat and how they will help us. I'm always searching for new and interesting information about food and nutrition so if you come across something helpful please post it on the blog so we can all learn together. Remember to check back every Friday for a new 'Friday Food Fact'.

I couldn't think of a food more fitting to start with than a Sweet Potato. I absolutely love these things and eat them like crazy. You might also be interested to know that Usain Bold, the fastest man in the World and Olympic Champion, credits his speed to the Jamaican Sweet Potato...eat up baby!Food: Sweet Potato
History: Researchers have found Sweet Potato relics in Peruvian caves dating back as far as 10,000 years but the Sweet Potato wasn't introduced to Europe until 1492 when Christopher Columbus brought it back from the New World.
Nutritional Benefit: High in vitamin C, vitamin A, and provide powerful antioxidants. Sweet Potatoes contain about twice the dietary fiber of the ordinary Russet potato.
Ways to Cook: I personally love to simply bake them whole in the oven and eat them plain. Dang they are good. The longer they bake the sweeter they seem to become. Steaming is supposed to keep the maximum nutrients in the food while it cooks but I never think it tastes as good that way. Another great preparation is to chop the potato into cubes, place it in the oven with some chopped Rosemary, wait for the pieces to become tender....BAM now that's a good side dish! It's also easy and works great to interchange Sweet Potatoes for regular baking potatoes in many recipes.

I'd love to hear what y'all think of my new addition of the 'Friday Food Fact'. Also please share any recipes or thoughts you may have on each particular Food Fact. Remember, eating healthy is not hard and tastes great...you just have to make the choice to do it.

12 comments:

LisieMern said...

Garrett, do you mean sweet potatoes or yams? I can never tell them apart.

Garrett said...

I mean Sweet Potatoes. Sweet Potatoes and Yams are actually two different things.

Sweet Potatoes are from the Convolvulaceae family whereas Yams are from the Dioscoreaceae family. They are unrelated species. Sweet Potatoes are native to South America whereas Yams are native to Africa and Asia.

M said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Melissa G said...

I like the Friday Food Fact G! Kind of like Athletic Foodie's tweets on new and interesting food-related words. May I suggest quinoa for a future FFF? Most people haven't heard of it (and can't pronounce it) but it's a great source of protein and excellent in soups/salads. Thanks!

daleyco said...

Have you ever made sweet potato french fries? Any suggestions for good recipes?

AI said...

I love sweet potatoes! I like them baked as well. Thanks for posting your Food fact! Keep up the good work and good luck with your training!

S said...

Scrub clean, slice quarter to half inch thick, 450 deg F, 15 min per side on greased/nonstick sprayed baking sheet. Ketchup. I haven't experimented much with spices yet, suggestions?

Garrett said...

Melissa that's a great idea. I'll put it on the list for the future. Thanks.

I've made sweet potato french fries on the grill. I recommend slicing up thin pieces with a knife or a mandodlin and put them on the grill on medium-low heat. Turn them so they get somewhat browned on each side. I like reducing down some Balsamic vinegar and dunking the fries in there.

I would put some finely chopped Rosemary on top of them before baking. Let me know how you like it if you try it out.

Lauren said...

I like the Friday addition to your blog - definitely keep it up if you can! I've baked sweet potatoes with apples as a side dish - just parboil the sweet potatoes, then peel and chop into large cubes. Chop a few good baking apples (I use whatever I have on hand) and throw it all in a baking dish. Nutmeg and/or cinnamon can be added as well. I usually cover it with foil (uncover towards the end to keep it from getting too mushy) and bake at 350-ish until the apples and sweet potatoes are cooked through and still a bit firm. Super easy and really tasty :)

You could also do a Friday Food Fact on lentils if you have a good lentil soup recipe. That's perfect for winter!

EatWisconsin said...

Garam Masala is awesome with Sweet Potatoes. Barossa (a now-closed restaurant in Walkers Point) used to serve this lamb dish with a side of cubed and sauteed sweet potatoes and peas seasonsed with Garam Masala and it just works perfect. I have made oven baked sweet potato fries with that seasoning too.

Sam said...

I have made sweet potato salad with baked sweet potatoes, black beans, cilantro, chiles and lime, adapted from a posting by Mark Bitten of the new york times.

Garrett said...

I've never tried sweet potatoes with apples...it's on my list now. Thanks

Garam Masala huh? Interesting...I'm going to look it up online to get some info.

cilantro, chiles and lime sounds like a good combo


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