Slow cooked spuds slathered in a tangy sweet butter.
4 orange-fleshed sweet potatoes, 340 to 455 g each, scrubbed
2 tbsp dark rum
1 cup root beer
1/4 cup molasses
1 tbsp cider vinegar
3 tbsp unsalted butter
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Step 1: Build a fire in a charcoal grill or campfire grill and let burn into a hot coal bed at least 2" deep. Leave the grill grate off so the coals are accessible. Let the coals burn down until they are thickly coated with ash.
Step 2: Prick each sweet potato several times with a fork, then bury them directly in the coals, raking the coals to nearly cover the potatoes. Cook until a skewer slides in and out of the center easily, about 1 hour, turning once or twice.
Step 3: While the sweet potatoes are cooking, in a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the rum, root beer, molasses, and vinegar. Bring to a boil and cook until reduced to one-fourth of the volume, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in the butter until melted and season to taste with salt and black pepper; set aside.
Step 4: Using tongs, lift the sweet potatoes from the coals. Brush off any loose ash and put on a platter or plates. Let cool a few minutes, then cut each sweet potato in half lengthwise and mash the flesh of each half with a fork. Drizzle on the root beer–molasses sauce and serve.
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Reprinted with permission from Cooking Slow (2013, Raincoast Books).