I was searching for something different than the everyday roasted/grilled sweet potato but not as “rich” as my mom’s glazed sweet potatoes or a sweet potato casserole when I thought of simply roasting sweet potato cubes in the oven like I roast other potatoes… with olive oil and salt. However, I prefer my sweet potatoes….well, sweeter. So, I thought I would add my favorite tasting sweetener, maple syrup.
A brief Internet search lead me to several recipes combining balsamic vinegar (a favorite of my husband) with the maple syrup (and a lot of water) for a sweet potato glaze. I decided to include balsamic vinegar in my glaze as well. It did not take long for me to find the balance and taste I wanted in a very easy glaze to make.
The maple syrup bumps up the flavor and sweetness of the sweet potatoes, while the balsamic vinegar adds a light acidic punch. A little (or a lot) of cinnamon also adds a little sweetness and warmth to the potatoes. Best of all, all of the ingredients can easily be adjusted to suit your tastes.
I think the hardest part of this easy dish is just cutting the raw sweet potatoes. 🙂 A heavier, sharp knife is a big help! The really good news is you can prep the sweet potatoes hours or even the night before you want to cook them. You just need to place them in a container of cold water as you get them cut into cubes and store the container in the refrigerator until you are ready to cook them. Before using, just lay them out on layers of towels and pat to dry.
I like how quickly smaller 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces of sweet potatoes cook, but you can cut them into whatever size pieces you desire. If you go above 1 1/2 inch pieces, I would definitely cook the potatoes with just the olive oil coating before putting them in the glaze to coat and finish baking them.
I usually make more than I know we will eat to have leftovers the next day. They are great in my sweet potato and lentil hash.