How Sweet a Potato is

Whether in a casserole topped with pineapples and marshmallows or baked in the oven with tofu and vegetables, sweet potatoes are a great addition to any fall menu.

Sweet potatoes are a complex carbohydrate that contains ample amounts of vitamins A and C as well as beta-carotene, vitamin B6, iron, potassium and fiber. Sweet potatoes can be baked, boiled, fried, broiled, canned or frozen. Before cooking sweet potatoes, scrub the skin and trim off any bruised or woody portions. Purchasing organic sweet potatoes is recommended.

Sweet potatoes and yams are often used interchangeably but in fact they are quite different. Although yams and sweet potatoes are both angiosperms (flowering plants), they are not related botanically. Yams are a monocot (a plant having one embryonic seed leaf) and from the Dioscoreaceae or Yam family. Sweet potatoes are a dicot (a plant having two embryonic seed leaves) and are from the Convolvulacea or morning glory family.

As the temperature gets cooler enjoy a warm morning breakfast with these delicious pancakes:

Sweet Potato Pancakes

Makes 8 servings.


6 cups peeled and finely shredded sweet 

1 cup finely shredded onions

1 tsp salt-free herb seasoning

1 2/3 cup unbleached flour

1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 cups finely shredded zucchini

¼ cup lemon juice

1½ cups egg substitute

6 tsp canola oil, divided


In a large bowl, mix the sweet potatoes, zucchini, onions, lemon juice, herb blend, egg, flour, and parsley. In a large no-stick frying pan or griddle over medium-high heat, warm 2 tsp of the oil. Drop a large Tbsp of the batter into the pan and spread it with a spatula to form a thin pancake. Add more batter to fill the pan without crowding the pancakes.

Cook for about 2 minutes per side, or until golden and crispy. Remove from the pan and keep warm. Repeat, adding the remaining 4 tsp oil as needed, until all the batter has been used.

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