I realized that in my last post, I never talked about my amazing vacation in Las Vegas! Kramer and I had a fabulous time. We got to spend lots of time with my parents, eat at incredible restaurants, and show off our Dharma Initiative costumes! We didn’t loose any money, either, so I consider it a very successful trip, indeed. Our first night there, we ate at the lovely L’atelier de Joel Robuchon, where we were lucky enough to enjoy the tasting menu. I cannot stress enough how much I loved everything on the menu. I had never had fois grais straight up, and it was a match made in heaven, I can tell you that much. We had Alba madonna truffles shaved over a few courses as well, and they were stunning. The taste was unlike anything I had ever had before; earthy, but rich, and thin enough so that each bit melted every so slowly on your tongue. My favorite dishes were a toss-up between the crab with turnip and dill (please excuse my camera phone pictures); it was so fresh I honestly couldn’t believe it. I definitely savored each and every bite. My other favorite course was the scallop with chives and what I believe was a miso sauce of some sort with the Alba madonna truffles shaved over the top. We were here on my father’s birthday, but he was kind enough to foot the bill for dinner, so thank you so much, Dad! It was an unforgettable meal. The next day, for lunch, we went to RM Seafood, which I had been wanting to try out for a long time. It was, without a doubt, the most delicious seafood I had ever tasted. It was so fresh, you could taste the salt water, I swear! We had Alaskan king crab legs that were so rich that you didn’t even need the generous serving of melted butter that came with them. The sushi and sashimi were my favorite, though. Each slice of fish was large, clean, and crisp. As much fun as the tasting menu at Robuchon was, I would much rather go back to RM Seafood again and just enjoy the beautiful simplicity of perfectly prepared seafood. Thank you again, Dad, for the lovely lunch! Of course, Kramer and I made sure to put aside some time to enjoy the pool at our hotel, as it was a wonderfully sunny weekend with highs in the upper 70s. It was quite a shock to return home to New York on Sunday night, where the temperatures had dropped into the 30s!
Alright, I’m sure you’re tired of hearing about our little weekend getaway. I made these sweet potatoes on the same night that I made my sugar pumpkin lasagna. Kramer really enjoyed them, and as someone who has shown a less than enthusiastic appreciation for sweet potatoes in the past, I think that I can claim this recipe as a victorious one. I wanted to take a step back away from the recipes that play up the sweeter side of sweet potatoes and head toward a more savory preparation. I used shallots, because they are so buttery and pack a real punch of flavor, while still being much more subtle than a traditional onion. If you don’t usually have shallots in your kitchen, I really recommend picking some up for your holiday meals this winter and using them in place of onions. Your family and friends will definitely notice a difference and be begging for your new secret ingredient! The savoriness of the shallots and the natural sweetness of the potatoes play well against each other, so I didn’t feel the need to add much more other than salt, pepper, thyme, and olive oil. I love that this is a one-dish meal, too! It requires minimal prep time, which helps to make your meal planning a little less stressful. All together, this is a side dish that everyone can enjoy, no matter what their tastes. Feel free to add to it – I think that dried fruit or walnuts would be a welcome addition!
Cube your sweet potatoes, then toss with the shallots, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme. Roast in a 400 degree F oven for 35-45 minutes, until the potatoes are tender.
You can see the fork on the side, checking for tender perfection! Be sure to serve these nice and hot!
- 4 medium-sized sweet potatoes (I used 2 orange and 2 white), peeled and diced
- 4 shallots, peeled and diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil (more or less, depending on how much you like to use)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4-5 sprigs fresh thyme (you can definitely use dry, if you don't have fresh - use ½ teaspoon dried)
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Place your sweet potatoes, cut into bite-sized pieces, into a baking dish (I used an oddly shaped, but beautiful, oval one that my aunt had given me last year, so don't worry if they aren't spread out in one single, even layer) and toss with the diced shallots, the minced garlic, the olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme. You can take the leaves off of the thyme sprigs, or you can just throw the sprigs right in there, which is what I did, as I find that the leave wilt and fall off the stem as it cooks anyway.
- Place in the oven and roast for 35-45 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Remove from the oven and serve alongside a roast, a turkey, or enjoy on their own! Serves 4 as a side dish.