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Milk Street Cookbook Club

Baked Sweet Potatoes with Maple Crème Fraîche

By Nik Sharma - Friend of Milk Street

4 Servings
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"We all adore certain pantry staples. Kefir and crème fraîche are two of my favorites. I’ve been testing new ways to improve on roasting sweet potatoes in the oven, and I found that a combination of steaming and roasting works great for a dish like this for both the texture and the extra set of aroma molecules that comes through. The first step, partial steaming, keeps the moisture inside the sweet potato while cooking, and the second step, uncovered roasting, helps create a robust flavor profile. I recommend using fragrant nuts. Toasted hazelnuts are a good substitute for the peanuts."


"Butter works as the fat of choice here due to its higher smoke point. As the butter melts, it separates into its constituents—fat, water, sugars, and milk solids—which undergo caramelization and the Maillard reaction.

The sugars concentrate as the water evaporates during cooking. Fish sauce adds a spot of umami to the sauce, you can use vegan fish sauce as an alternative. The peanuts and scallions provide crunch against the softer textures of the potato and the dressing." — Nik Sharma

Reprinted from The Flavor Equation by Nik Sharma with permission by Chronicle Books, 2020


  • 4

    sweet potatoes (each 7 oz [200 g]), preferably a yellow-fleshed variety such as Garnet or Jewel

  • 2

    Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature


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Diana L.

I made this tonight. The photo looks amazing but my potatoes did not look like on the photo. My family rated this 3 out of 5. The sauce tasted good. My potatoes took longer to cook. I had to increase my temperature oven to 425 then cook again for 20 minutes.

Kevin W.

I've made this a few times now and it's become a go-to side dish. I do the potatoes on a half sheet pan, uncovered (but turning as per recipe). For the dressing I prefer using sour cream and hot honey; this results in a thicker/firmer dressing that doesn't get runny on the warm sweet potatoes. Love it!

Barbara G.

Will definitely make again. I liked the crunch from the green onions and the peanuts. Such a nice change from sickly sweetness of most sweet potato recipes