Sprucing Up Sweet Potatoes

Women of my grandmother’s era used wonderful pithy expressions like “the road to hell is paved with good intentions” to chastise their kids and grandkids. In my case, my grandmother would have said that my particular road to hell was paved with good intentions and past-its-prime produce.Too often I’m seduced by beautiful, fresh local produce at a farm stand or the Root Cellar that ends up languishing in my crisper drawer.

The late fall and winter are particularly challenging. I bring home lots of root vegetables, but can’t think of interesting things to do with them.  So I was delighted the other day when I saw Jamie Oliver liven up sweet potatoes with mango chutney and cilantro. Definitely more interesting than my usual roasted sweet potatoes with roasted garlic and chipotles!

I’ve made my own version of Jamie’s recipe a couple of times now. It’s been terrific both times, once with steamed halibut and once with grilled pork tenderloin and roasted parsnips, fennel and carrots.

Here are the recipes for the sweet potato and the pork tenderloin.


Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Mango Chutney and Cilantro

The sweet potatoes can be roasted and mashed ahead of time and reheated in the oven or microwave. Add the remaining ingredients after reheating.
Serves 3-4


  • 2 large sweet potatoes (the orange kind)
  • 2 tablespoons mango chutney
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped jalapeno pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ½ lemon


  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Cut sweet potatoes in half lengthwise. Place potatoes, cut side down on a cookie sheet or baking pan lined with parchment. Roast until sweet potatoes are cooked through (test with paring knife), 45 – 60 minutes.
  2. Remove from oven. Peel and mash potatoes.
  3. Add mango chutney, jalapeno, garam masala and cilantro. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place in serving bowl or on plates. Squeeze lemon over sweet potatoes just as you serve them.

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Sweet and Salty Southwest Rub

Serves 3
  • 1 pork tenderloin 1 – 1 ¼ pounds, trimmed of any fat
  • 2-3  Tablespoons Southwestern Rub (same one I use for fish tacos)
  1. Preheat barbeque on high heat.
  2. Coat tenderloin in rub
  3. Once barbeque is hot, place tenderloin on grill.
  4. Turn tenderloin over after about 4-5 minutes. Continue cooking until meat reaches 140°F at the thickest part, as measured by an instant read thermometer. Total cooking time will be 12-20 minutes, depending on your barbeque.
  5. Remove tenderloin from heat. Place on plate or cutting board and cover with foil. Let rest for 5 minutes. Cut into ½ cm slices, plate and serve with sweet potatoes and vegetables.

3 thoughts on “Sprucing Up Sweet Potatoes

    • Hi Ann,
      Although the taste won’t be the same, you could substitute1/4 – 1/2 tsp of chili powder, or 1/2 tsp of (canned) chipotle chile. You are really just trying to get a bit of spicy heat into the dish. BTW you can freeze the leftover chipotle chiles. They seem to keep forever.

  1. Pingback: Holiday Saga: Rosemary Mint Roasted Chicken & Sweet Potatoes w/ Cranberry and Chipotle Dressing « Today's Briseis

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