"SWEET POTATOES: A sure sign of autumn is the appearance of sweet potatoes, plump edible roots that are members of the morning glory family. Some have tan skin and light yellow flesh, while others have darker red-orange skin and flesh. The latter is often called a yam in the United States, although it is not a true yam. It is slightly moister and sweeter than the sweet potato, which has the same texture as a regular potato when cooked and mashed. Sweet potatoes combine well with different flours, especially cornmeal, adding texture, flavor, and moisture to bread."
Sweet Potato Corn Bread
*makes one 9-inch corn bread*
2 sweet potatoes, about 1 lb total weight, peeled and cut into chunks
1 cup fine-grind yellow cornmeal, preferably stone-ground
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
pinch of ground allspice
pinch of ground cinnamon
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for greasing
1) Bring a saucepan three-fourths full of water to a boil over high heat, add the sweet potatoes, and cook until tender, 15-20 minutes. Remove from the heat and drain thoroughly. Transfer to a food processor and pulse until slightly fluffy. Scrape into a bowl and let cool to room temperature.
2) Preheat the oven to 400F. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan.
3) In a small bowl, stir together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, allspice, and cinnamon. Stir well.
4) Add the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter to the sweet potatoes and mix well. Then add the dry ingredients and stir just until combined, taking care not to overmix. The batter should be slightly lumpy. Pour into the prepared pan.
5) Bake until the top is golden brown and the bread pulls away from the pan sides, 30-35 minutes. Place the pan on a rack to cool slightly or completely. Cut into squares to serve.