Wednesday 21 November 2012


A few years ago (actually I just looked it up it was over four years ago, when we had only been in London for a couple of months and we were getting use to the flat we had rented in Stoke Newington - it feels simultaneously like way less than four years ago and like a lifetime ago) I found this recipe and we proceeded to make it regularly for a couple of months before it was replaced with some other weeknight staple. Maybe this, or this. I really don't remember. Baked sweet potatoes were forgotten for a while, consigned to the drawer marked 'stuff we used to make for dinner' along with pasta and pesto.

But they recently made a reappearance; baked, split, filled with feta, olive oil, spring onions, and sumac. They have gone right back to being an easy fallback; all of the ingredients available at the tiny terrible supermarket across the road, nothing requiring forward planning, or really any thought at all. Something to eat with mounds of green salad dressed with a tiny bit of olive oil and some sea salt. Easy, reliable, delicious.

On Friday, when Chris was heading out to a friend's to eat hot dogs and drink beers with seven other guys and I had dithered about whether to buy a steak, or fish and chips, or a curry, or make an omelette, before realising that I just couldn't be bothered, I ran across the road, picked up sweet potatoes and feta. Decision made and done. But, when I put those potatoes on the baking sheet (always remember the baking sheet, and something to cover the baking sheet, caramelised sweet potato goo is messy and surprisingly resilient stuff) I decided to bake the whole bag, eat one or two and use the rest to finally make the sweet potato pound cake that I pinned this time last year and that I have been meaning to make since Molly first posted it  over three years ago.

It took me until Monday to actually start baking. On Saturday, after a lunch of croque madame and fries in Leith, we jumped on a  bus into town to meet friends who were up from London. A quick drink turned into we should eat, turned into noodles, turned into one last drink, turned into closing time, turned into a painful Sunday morning leading up to a three year old's birthday party, turned into a pretty pathetic Sunday night (albeit one with a very good soup). Baking was not on the cards. So, on Monday, after yoga, I got home turned the oven on and finally started.

I didn't make the glaze (partly because I didn't have the buttermilk, partly because, with my new habit of sending us to work most days with a slice of cake, I thought that extra hit of butter and sugar may be best avoided) so just left the cake to cool on the rack until the next morning. It's a good one, moist with a pleasurable heft and a hint of spice from the nutmeg. I'll try not to wait so long to make it again.


Alicia Foodycat said...

I'm so impressed that you got it out of the tin so beautifully! I must have a go at this one.

Gemma said...

I haven't had any problems with the tin as long as I butter and flour it. I didn't bother flouring it when I made the vanilla bundt a few weeks ago and it took me ages to coax the cake out!