We were invited to a small pre-Christmas gathering at our friends house and I was tasked with bringing a sweet potato casserole. Not just any sweet potato casserole, but the one with mini marshmallows. Specifically mini marshmallows. Well, I haven’t had marshmallows of any kind in my house, not even for s’mores (which I think are gross), for years, many, many years. So I don’t really know what is involved in making this sweet potato casserole (SPC) but I’m a pretty good cook so I think I can figure it out.
I figured I would just Google it like any good cook would do, trouble with that is, there are a lot of different ways people like to cook this SPC. I like to cook my sweet potatoes roasted in the oven with some lemon, honey and a little butter and call it good. No nuts, no marshmallows, no brown sugar. Then I remembered that my Mom used to make SPC all the time when I was a kid. She would give me the best way to cook them. I gave her a call and explained my predicament, which she thought was pretty funny as it was so easy for her to whip it up. She said just put them in the pan with some butter and brown sugar and top them with the marshmallows and bake it for a while. Okay, I’ll come up with something.
First though, I have to get the ingredients so off to Wal-Mart I go. I don’t typically buy canned yams, so that was a challenge to find them. Partly because the shelf was nearly empty and I didn’t see them all crowded at the back on the bottom shelf. Then there was the marshmallows. I go to the shelf and there are no plain white mini-marshmallows. None. Not one bag. Plenty of big ones, square ones and 3 bags of pastel minis. I’m standing in the aisle and now I am beginning to mutter to myself, ‘I can’t believe they are out of marshmallows! How can Wal-Mart be out of marshmallows?’ I bend down low to look at the bottom shelf, way in the back, there must be one more bag somewhere. Then I’m thinking how I’m going to have to make a stop at another store just to get white mini-marshmallows. Next thing I know, the clerk who was stocking the shelves at the other end of the aisle approaches me and says, ‘excuse me ma’am, there are many more marshmallows out in the center aisle, you know, in the middle.’ Boy did I feel silly.
I take my cart and make my way out to that big aisle where they put all the seasonal stuff and there is a whole pallet full of mini-marshmallows. Both brands, Jet-Puffed and Great Value. I am not skimping for my friends, one bag of Jet-Puffed mini-marshmallows into the cart. Crisis averted.
I still hadn’t decided on how I was going to prepare this delicacy, but lo and behold! On the can of the yams there’s a recipe! How lucky am I? But it calls for pecans. Does everyone like pecans? Some people don’t like crunchy stuff on their soft food. I decide to put pecans on half of the SPC, which is a good idea until I cover the whole thing over with mini-marshmallows and you can’t see which side doesn’t have the nuts.(By the way, there was a recipe for SPC on the back of the mini-marshmallow package too, just yams, butter and marshmallows, much simpler) If there had been a picture of SPC on the can or on the package of mini-marshmallows, my finished SPC would have been a match. It turned out beautifully.
We had a lovely dinner of prime rib, mashed potatoes,
honey glazed carrots, green beans, roasted sweet potatoes and SPC. I didn’t dish up any of the SPC, seemed a little too sweet for me what with all the brown sugar and mini-marshmallows. My dinner companions raved over the SPC. ‘This is delicious!’, they exclaimed. After that glowing review, I thought I should at least have a taste, so I scooped a small spoonful on to my plate, even with a little bit of that white, sticky substance and gave a taste. I’m sure glad they liked it. That would not be something that will pass into my belly again any time soon. I think I’ll stick with roasting them without the mini-marshmallows and let marshmallows be that thing I squeeze when I pass by them in the store.
Here’s a cool picture of a cactus since I didn’t take any photos of the SPC.