Essentially, there is no recipe for this post. It is almost a common sense type of preparation and what is needed maybe some forms of simple guidelines. I have decided to blog this recipe because it is my childhood food that brings lots of fond memories. I want to document this for my kids to understand their dad better and foods that he has eaten when young.
Childhood food? Is it correct? Is there any ovens in the 1970s or 1980s? Of course there are electric oven for some families but not our families. Then how did we cook this?
When I am young, we have some family food business and we have two big concrete stoves (like the one in the picture below) that uses wood as the burning fuel. We have to steam rice every day and after steaming, all the wood charcoals were transferred out of the stoves and the charcoal were used as fuel for daily cooking.
My late mum will throw a few sweet potatoes inside the empty stoves, at times covered with the ashes and let it “baked” using the remaining heat until cooked. That baked sweet potatoes had become our childhood snacks.. The aroma and the sweetness of the slightly char sweet potatoes still lingers in my mind. I have therefore decided to try it using modern electric oven.
All these whiles, I loved baked sweet potatoes and I have a weakness to purchase it if I smell the aroma. These earth oven baked sweet potatoes are especially common during winter in parts of China.
There are carts with this small oven that bake and sell the sweet potatoes by the road side. When freshly out of the oven, the steaming sweet potatoes are so delicious… To me it is a very healthy snack during winter that can provide energy for the whole afternoon.
My recipe is what I have eaten at my home or those sold in China. If you looked at the images at the web, I presumed you know you can modify the recipe to suit your taste bud. You can always cut open and brush with melted butter or even added cheese to the potatoes. To me all these are extra calories that is unnecessary but of course the decision is yours.
WHAT IS REQUIRED
- some sweet potatoes of your choice.
STEPS OF PREPARATION
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 degree Celsius, bake the sweet potatoes until a skewer can easily pierce through the thickest part of the sweet potatoes. You can start to test the doneness when you smell the aroma of sweet potatoes. It is difficult to provide a timing as it will depend on the weight, shape and size of the sweet potatoes. Thin sweet potatoes are easier to cook and round and oval sweet potatoes take much longer time. For this batch, i have bake for about 1/2 hours.
- When you bake, the sweet potatoes will become softer and softer. The softer the sweet potatoes, the better it is.. It is acceptable even the outside skin has signs of being burnt. When serving, skin will be peeled and what is eaten is the internal fleshes. Baked sweet potatoes is best served when it is immediately out of oven and steaming hot. It is the softest and the easiest to peel off the skin. If your sweet potatoes are not sweet, drizzle of honey or dip with white sugar for serving.
- If you are worried that the sweet potatoes will become dry after baked, you can try to wrap it with an aluminium foil before baking .
If you have never try eating these sweet potatoes, do give it a try. A bit char is acceptable and at times, the sweet potatoes juices will be secreted and caramelized causing dark spots on the skin. It is these type of charred sweet potatoes that is delicious. Just peel off the skin and enjoy while it is hot.
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