U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farmers Market âVegU(cation)â tent, where people learn how to how to pick, and store sweet potatoes; and prepare honey roasted sweet potatoes using produce grown in the local area and sold here in downtown Washington, D.C., on Friday, September 23, 2016. USDA employees from the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and vendors volunteer as vegetable educators a.k.a. âVegUcatorsâ conducting free 10-minute fruit and vegetable classes. Todayâs âVegUcatorsâ are USDA AMS âVegUâ Program Coordinator Sara Pellegrino, preparing and talking about the recipe. During this season of the outdoor USDA Farmers Markets, 26 recipes will be taught at the VegU tent. Their scheduled demonstration dates are the peak harvest time to look for these foods. The goal is to increase fruits and vegetables in meals and help people understand what is in season. Guests can receive a free recipe card and can start shopping for ingredients at the market.
Multimedia by Lance Cheung.
USDA Multimedia by Lance Cheung.
HONEY ROASTED SWEET POTATOES
Yields 9 servings.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
2 lbs sweet potatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp allspice
1.Preheat oven to 375 ÂºF.
2.Wash sweet potatoes under cold water and scrub with a brush to remove soil.
3.Chop sweet potatoes into 1/2-inch cubes and place on baking dish.
4.Bake for 30 minutes or until tender.
5.Transfer sweet potatoes to sautÃ© pan on medium heat. Toss with olive oil, honey cinnamon and allspice. Cook for 10 minutes or until golden.
6.Sprinkle with salt if desired. Serve warm.
HOW TO PICK
Look at color: Look for firm sweet potatoes with smooth, bright, uniformly colored skins, free from signs of decay, because they are more perishable than white potatoes. Extra care should be used in selecting sweet potatoes. Avoid sweet potatoes with wormholes, cuts. Grub injury or any other defects that penetrate the skin, which can lead to decay. Even if you cut away the decayed portion, the remainder of the potato flesh may have a bad taste. Choose the right size: Select small to medium in size. Larger potatoes tend to be starchier. If you plan on dicing your sweet potato, look for ones that are skinny or long in length in order to making chopping easier.
CULINARY TIPS AND RECIPES
â¢ Fresh sweet potatoes can be roasted, mashed, baked, or prepared in a casserole as a nutritious side dish.
â¢ Sweet potatoes can also be added to other foods such as soups, casseroles, whole grain pastas, and chicken dishes.
â¢ Offering sweet potatoes in a variety of forms can help schools meet the red/orange vegetable requirements in the updated school meal patterns.
â¢ To find culinary techniques and many recipe ideas visit NFSMI (nfsmi.org/Templates/TemplateDefault.aspx?qs=cElEPTIxNg) or Team Nutrition (healthymeals.nal.usda.gov/recipes/recipes-school-food-ser...).
HOW TO PREPARE SWEET POTATOES
Before eating or preparing, wash the sweet potato under cold running tap water and scrub with a brush to remove any lingering dirt. This reduces bacteria that may be present. Do not wash with detergent or soap. Leaving skin on potatoes during cooking is an excellent way to conserve nutrients. Sweet potatoes can be prepared in multiple ways including microwaving, baking, sautÃ©ing, mashing, frying, or grilling. They can also be eaten raw.
To microwave: With a fork, pierce the sweet potato skin 5 to 6 times. Place on a microwaveable plate and microwave for 5 to 8 minutes, rotating halfway through.
To bake: Preheat oven to 400 ÂºF. With a fork, pierce sweet potato skin 5 to 6 times. Place on baking sheet lined with foil. Bake until tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
To roast: Dice into cubes. Place on a baking sheet. Coat sweet potato cubes with olive oil. Bake at 400 ÂºF for 45 minutes.