Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Mango Mint Salsa
Summer ‘s just around the corner, so it is time to fire up the grill! Vegetables are perfect for grilling and serving as the main course. Sweet potatoes, often called yams are in the morning glory family and are indigenous to the American tropics. Mangoes come from Mexico and the Caribbean, in the springtime and early summer. Often called the king of fruits due to its sweet, melting flesh. Here mango mint salsa makes the perfect companion to grilled sweet potatoes!
For years I have grilled Jamaican Jerk chicken breasts in the summer, a recipe I created for my cooking school. It is a delicious fiery grilled entrée. The full flavor of a tropical yam or sweet potato makes a great plant-based substitute for the spicy chicken. Once you try this simple recipe I think you will find that you do not miss the chicken and may just find that you prefer the yam version, I sure do!
Grilled Sweet Potatoes
2 -4 sweet potatoes (about 2 pounds total), washed
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (divided)
Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons full-fat yogurt (optional)
Mango Mint Salsa
½ cup fresh mint leaves
2 mangoes, peeled, cut into ½ inch chunks
2 tablespoons red onion, minced
1 serrano chili, stemmed, seeded, minced
¼ cup sweet red pepper stemmed, seeded, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
2. Lightly rub the sweet potatoes with one tablespoon of the olive oil. Prick each with a paring knife several times to allow steam to escape.
3. Place on a sheet pan in the oven for thirty-five to forty minutes or until a skewer can just barely go to the center. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes.
4. Meanwhile, make the Mango Mint Salsa: Blanch the mint leaves in a small pot of boiling water for thirty seconds to a minute. Drain and rinse with running cold water to cool. Squeeze -dry and finely chop the mint. Combine the mint, onion, chilies, red pepper, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Taste, Think, Transform with salt and/or lime juice.
5. Preheat a grill or cast-iron grill pan.
6. Peel the sweet potatoes and cut into one-half inch slices. Pour the remaining olive oil in a flat dish. Dip each slice in the olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and paprika.
7. Place the slices on one side and sear for about one to two minutes, rotating a quarter turn to produce crosshatch marks. Flip over and repeat on the other side.
8. Serve the sweet potatoes topped with the salsa. Optionally drizzle with yogurt.