“Stuffing” our faces
As always, Thanksgiving in Tucson was full of friends, family, fun and food comas—lots of them. While I’m the last person to let dietary restrictions rain on my pig-out parade, I felt inclined to make a gluten-free dish for my dear nana (A thinly veiled attempt to become the favorite grandchild? Maybe). The resulting creation was a sweet potato “stuffing” inspired by a work potluck dish a la creative director of the century, David (A thinly veiled attempt at a raise? Maybe.). This stuff is FANTASTIC—even if you aren’t foregoing gluten. While it won’t replace the good-old Pepperidge-Farm-stuffing-in-a-bag variety my family loves so much, it’s definitely a holiday side worth adding to your rotation. Plus, it’s ridiculously healthy—almost too much so for this butter-loving blogger.
Sweet potato “stuffing”
3 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced red pepper
1/2 cup diced green pepper
1 tbsp. thyme (fresh is better but dried will do—same goes for all herbs)
1 tsp. sage
1 tsp. rosemary
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 cup crushed pecans, toasted
4 tbsp. butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Toast crushed pecans in a skillet over medium-high heat for about 2-3 minutes. Set aside.
Cook peppers in skillet with 2 tbsp. butter over medium-high heat for a few minutes. Add onions and celery and cook until tender. Set aside.
Cook chopped sweet potatoes in the same skillet with remaining butter over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally, but let the sweet potatoes sit long enough to start to develop a little bit of a caramelized, crispy skin. Cook for several minutes until sweet potatoes are tender.
Mix potatoes, vegetables, spices, herbs and pecans together until incorporated and spoon into a casserole dish. Finish off in a 375-degree oven for 10 minutes before serving.