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Candied Sweet Potatoes

This recipe comes from my mom, Sonia Sanders.  I added the vanilla, cayenne pepper, lemon juice and lemon rind alla Paul Prudhomme.

4 pounds sweet potatoes (about 7)

Wash potatoes well. Prick each several times with a fork. Bake in a 400 degree oven just until tender. Or cook in a pressure cooker with 1 cup water for 10 minutes. Potatoes are done when easily pricked with a fork or knife. Let set until they are cool enough to handle.

In a medium saucepan combine:

2 cups water

1 pound brown sugar

Bring to a boil and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Then add:

2 teaspoons vinegar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 stick butter

3-4 shakes of cayenne pepper

Juice and grated rind of 1 lemon

2 teaspoons vanilla

Heat mixture until butter is melted.

  • Peel your cooled baked sweet potatoes. Then cut into halves lengthwise.
  • Place in an orderly fashion in a 9 x 13 inch glass or ceramic baking/serving dish.
  • Pour sauce over.
  • Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until sauce is simmering. Throughout cooking time, baste potatoes with the sauce.  Flavors meld when cooled and reheated the following day or so.
  • Serve piping hot directly from your baking dish!
  • You can also add pecans at this time if desired.

I prepare this dish a day before serving so flavor so meld. Refrigerate in the baking dish overnight.

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