When the weather cooled off last month and loads of amazing treats started showing themselves all over pinterest, my hibernation instinct kicked in and I began foraging.
Foraging in the pantry, putting together snacky treats under the illusion that if I didn’t compile and consume RIGHT then, the ingredients would somehow grow appendages and walk themselves out of my kitchen overnight. Or worse: the very well preserved ingredients would go bad before I had the chance to harvest, compile and consume, like the pantry items hadn’t already been sitting for six months prior. Heaven forbid; that’d be unfortunate.
When days are short and dark, there’s really only one logical thing to do: eat. Followed by lengthy pinterest sessions, followed by more eating. Get home from work, fix a fully loaded chili with allllll the fixings and why not have a couple of beers? Sure! Finish dinner, spread some nutella on the ol graham cracker…and let’s be real: we can’t have nutella graham without hot chocolate. It’s bakey rainy kinda day, so let’s get our cookie on, taste testing every step of the way beginning with the creamed butter and sugar. Ooooh, that’s ugly. Oh and that recipe I saw for salted caramel brownie ridiculousness? Let’s try our hand at that just to see what all the fuss is about. And thanks, pinterest, for showing me a homemade pumpkin spice latte…I’ll go ahead and make that now.
Go to bed full and comforted and by golly, start it all over again the next day. I don’t normally do this, and you know what? IIIII like it! Forage, collect, compile, shovel, repeat. Never have I ever spun so hard on my spinny bike in order to justify all this instinctual consumption of all things heavy and comforting.
While full-bodied food is fun to make and even more fun to eat, at a certain point, I stage an intervention, sit myself down and admit to myself: I need to wean off before I make a lifestyle as a professional graham cracker with nutella eater. Weaning off begins with a great deal of fresh greens interspersed by a ridiculous amount of fruit, topped with a healthified treat. Herein walks the yam topped with honey candied walnuts and raisins.
Very filling, full of vitamins, naturally sweet and topped with goodies that have nothing but great things going for them. Funny how I enjoy these healthified treats just as much as the butter and sugar drenched balls of gluten…funny how much better I feel the next morning when I choose the healthified treat over the pinterest-inspired molten chocolate a la mode…and how much faster I spin. This yam was phenomenal and I definitely recommend it…as a side dish, as a dessert, as a comfort object. Whichever, whenever, it’s delicious and should be made in bulk on Thanksgiving. Thanks, yam, you’re a great wean-er (bahahaha!), you can wean me any day.
Roasted Yams with Honey Walnuts & Raisins
- 2 large yams poked with holes and roasted
- 1-1/2 cups walnuts coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup honey
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees
Wash the yams and pat them dry.
Poke yams a few times with a fork, wrap them in aluminum foil and bake them in the oven for 45 to 60 minutes (depending on size. Mine took a full hour). The yams are done when thick juice is seeping out of them and they’re soft when poked.
Remove yams from the oven and set aside.
Add all ingredients at the same time to a medium-sized skillet and heat to medium or medium high. Stir with a wooden spoon until honey is coating everything, walnuts become fragrant and raisins plump up, about 2 to 3 minutes, careful not to burn.
Once yams are cool enough to handle, quarter them and top with desired amount of topping.
A fabulous idea: give them a squirt of whipped cream or a drizzle of melted butter.