Sweet potatoes are available year-round, but their true seasons are fall and winter.
When selecting choose firm, unblemished sweet potatoes without any breaks in their thin skin.
Preparing: To bake whole sweet potatoes, scrub them well first and prick their skins in a few places with a fork. Place them on a baking sheet to catch their juices, and bake in a preheated 400-degree oven until they are tender when pierced with a knife, about 45 minutes. They may then be peeled and sliced or cut into chunks for glazing, or puréed. You can also peel uncooked sweet potatoes and cook them in salted boiling water until tender before glazing or pureeing.
Sweet potatoes do not keep well. Store them in a cool, dark place, but plan to use them within a week or so.
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