Spicy Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Mashed potatoes are a staple in this house for any holiday meal and in the past I've often spent hours in the kitchen preparing huge batches of fluffy potatoes loaded up with sour cream and butter. Several years ago I was looking to add a bit of variety to our holiday menu so I started making mashed sweet potatoes for our Thanksgiving dinner. They quickly became one of my favorite side dishes to prepare, if only because they are much less time consuming to make than regular mashed potatoes. There is no peeling or boiling involved and very little mashing, so it is a huge time saver during an already jam packed week. I need every extra minute I can get during the holidays, don't you? They also make an excellent side dish to chicken or pork and I make them often when sweet potatoes are in season. This year I decided to dress them up a little bit with some cayenne pepper, cumin, ginger and white pepper just to give them a little kick. If you're looking for something just a little bit different this year give these a try, I'm positive they'll become a staple in your home too.
Spicy Mashed Sweet Potatoes
makes 6-8 servings

Ingredients

3lbs sweet potatoes (this ended up being 4-5 medium potatoes)
4 Tablespoons salted butter, melted
2 Tablespoons maple syrup (I used Grade A Golden Amber)
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon white pepper
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon ginger 

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Scrub potatoes, place on a foil lined baking sheet, and puncture each potato with a knife or fork (to allow steam to escape.)
  • Bake for 1 hour if using medium sized potatoes, or longer if using large sized potatoes. Large potatoes can take up to 2 hours to bake. If you're in a hurry, or the oven is in use, you can also cook the sweet potatoes in the microwave on high for 10 - 15 minutes.
  • Remove potatoes from the oven or microwave and let them cool before removing skins.
  • Scrape the potatoes into a mixing bowl, then add melted butter, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, white pepper, cumin and ginger.
  • Use a mixer or potato masher to combine ingredients. Serve the potatoes immediately, or make this dish ahead of time and reheat the day of your event. Enjoy!