The Wednesday Food Section of the New York Times had my mouth watering and while Mark Bittman had some nice sweet potato offerings, last weekend we made this little dish for Namiko's Birthday lunch to go with a beautiful roasted ham made by Tomoko. We all agreed it had Thanksgiving written all over it. Plus I think we got pretty artistic with the top (we had started to cut the squash in pretty circles until we stopped ourselves when we decided to try this...we can be quite spontaneous go with the flow kind of folks when we want to be).
The varieties of squash and sweet potato don't matter (what's the difference between a sweet potato and a yam anyway?) --whatever looks good at your local market, as long as everything is cubed the same size--I love the way honey, lime juice and mint come together---for me it's a little memory of Summer in the Fall and the flavors brighten up anything else on your plate. I'm a huge fan of sweet and savory together. The herbs you use don't matter as long they're fresh---Sage and thyme would be just as nice and very Thanksgiving-y--just omit the lime juice and add a dash of sea salt and a splash of sherry vinegar...
3-4 winter squash--acorn, butternut, delicata, kabocha
or any other beautiful squash you can find
2-3 very large yams or sweet potatoes or 6 medium
1/2 cup honey
1/4 c brown sugar (or agave syrup would work)
Juice of one lime
about 1/4-1/2 c. chopped fresh mint
2 Tbs. chopped fresh chives
After 20 minutes sprinkle some of the brown sugar on both pans and toss gently.
-Check potato after 30 minutes (10 minutes after you sprinkled the sugar!)...when it's soft drizzle with honey and toss gently---keep in oven 5 minutes more and pull out.
After 40 minutes (20 minutes after sugaring!) check squash for doneness and toss with rest of honey. Keep in for 5 more minutes and pull that sheet out.
Everything should be nice and soft (but not too soft) and coated nicely with honey.
-Turn out both pans into a dish. Taste and if you need more honey, add a little more so it melts into the hot melange. Add lime juice, mint and chives and a sprinkle of sea salt and a crack of pepper. Serve hot and eat vigorously.
We're going to Iowa for Thanksgiving...We'll have dinner with my honey's family...and I don't have to cook! I love Thanksgiving at my mother-in-law's--she's a great cook--I think we may have actually invited ourselves...