|Baked yam with spicy molasses butter|
When I'm the one making dinner, there are two routes I follow. One, which you see featured here, involves poking through several cookbooks and the internet, focusing heavily on what's local and seasonal, turning the recipe into a balanced meal and, of course, putting my own spin on things to keep you, readers, interested. The other, far less involved cooking, is based upon a perusal of the fridge and pantry and little to no advance planning or shopping. These recipes are rarely innovative or particularly interesting. However, they are tasty, fast and easy to pull together.
These days, I have two strikes against doing any interesting cooking. First, it's Passover, which usually requires more innovative cooking than usual but, when I'm tired and the majority of the vegetarian's regular diet is made up of forbidden (to Ashkenazi me) kitniyos, it makes reheated leftovers seem ever-more appealing. And, really, how many matzoh brie variations can I give you? Secondly, I'm performing five nights a week in The Family Shakespeare, a fabulous new play (if I do say so myself). So while I am often starving when I arrive home at night, there certainly isn't time to first start cooking then.
With all that said, I've decided to include a new feature on the blog: Fast and Easy recipes. These are often thrown together, based off of recipes I've found on the internet. They are primarily inspired by ingredients I already have at home, supplemented (to a greater or lesser degree) by any additional shopping the vegetarian or I have been able to complete. Since it is Passover, this one is Kosher for Passover. Though the butter is quite dark and not pretty, it's certainly delicious, especially alongside some matzoh meal polenta. This came about because I realized I had an obscene amount of butter in the fridge and the majority of a bottle of blackstrap molasses leftover from my chunky banana bran muffins. Enjoy!
Whole Baked Yams with Spicy Molasses Butter
adapted from Epicurious
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
- Tangerine zest, from 1 tangerine, grated
- 1 teaspoon chili powder (if you don't eat cumin on Passover, find a blend without or make your own)
- 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan salt
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 6 garnet yams
In a food processor, combine butter, molasses, cinnamon, zest, chili powder, salt and pepper until completely uniform. Let rest while you cook the yams.
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a large baking pan with aluminum foil. Cut a 1/2-inch deep slit lengthwise down the middle of each yam, stopping about 1 inch before each end. Place on baking sheet and bake 1 hour, 15 minutes.
When cooked, remove yams from pan and, using the slit for help, open up. Spoon 1 tablespoon molasses butter on top and mash well. Bon appetit!
Links to other molasses butter noshes: