The Sauce: Pecan Honey Sauce -A spiced glaze with a touch of heat, loaded with crunchy roasted pecans. This sauce soaks into the sweet potatoes and apples while baking and creates a glistening glaze for the dish.
A hit of heat and texture
Sweet potato casseroles are a popular dish on Thanksgiving tables. If you like the pureed version, this is not your dish. On the other hand, if you are ready for a change and want to try a dish that has some texture and fall apple flavor, this is it. It’s lower in calories because no milk, cream or eggs are on the ingredient list. And it has a mild hit of heat adding flavor without calories. And wow, it’s so beautiful.
2011 AniversaRecipe – Pumpkin Mascarpone Pie
Recipe: Sweet Potatoes and Apples with Pecans
Prep Time: 10 Min | Inactive Time: 40 Min | Cook Time: 1 Hour 50 Min | Yield: 6-8 Servings | Level: Easy
- 4 large sweet potatoes, 3 lbs
- 1 cup pecans
- 4 Tbsp butter, cut in chunks
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp cayenne
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 small apples
Special Equipment – 8 x 8 baking dish
1 Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2 Bake the potatoes until they are mostly done and lightly yield to a squeeze, about 50 minutes. Don’t pierce. They will finish cooking when baked with the apples. Cool, about 30-40 minutes.
3 Slice the potatoes in 1/2-inch disks. Peel and slice the apples in 1/2-inch wedges. Spray a 8 x 8 baking dish with cooking spray. Arrange potatoes and apples in the baking dish.
4 In a small sauté pan, lightly toast the pecans over medium high heat, shaking the pan frequently to prevent scorching, about 1-2 minutes. Turn the heat to medium. Add the butter, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne and salt. Stir and simmer for 4-5 minutes.
5 Pour the Pecan Honey Sauce over the potatoes and apples, cover with foil and bake at 375 for 45-50 minutes until potatoes are tender and apples yield to a fork but are not mushy. Baste the potatoes and apples with some of the pecan apple sauce in the bottom of the dish for a glistening glaze.
Sweet potatoes come in lots of interesting shapes and sizes. For this recipe, pick 4 potatoes that are shaped like long tubes so when sliced they have nice round circles that are similar in size. Place the narrow ends on the bottom of the dish.
Select a crisp apple variety like Gala, Empire, Jazz, Cortland, Fuji or Macintosh. Pick smaller apples that when sliced will be about the same length as the circumference of the potatoes.
Bake the potatoes a day ahead, cool and place in the fridge with jackets on.
Once the pecan honey sauce is poured over the potatoes and apples, take a moment to turn the pecan halves with the flat side down to create a beautiful presentation.
Many sweet potato dishes are sweetened with brown sugar. This dish is graced with honey. There are several hundred unique kinds of honey; use any variety in this recipe. Crystallization of honey is natural. To liquify, heat the honey jar in a water bath but because the honey is simmered here, using crystallized honey is fine. If kept free from moisture, honey will never spoil. China, Argentina, Turkey and the United States are the top 4 honey producing countries in the world.
Serve this dish on Thanksgiving or Christmas with roast turkey, chicken or ham.
- Exchange honey for agave.
- Exchange sweet potatoes for yams.
- Adjust the amount of cayenne for more or less heat.
Inspiration – Guy Fieri
Cook with Sauces
Written by Helen Horton
Photographs by Helen Horton
Updated: November 14, 2012