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>Every now and then you’re lucky enough to stumble across a recipe that hits you like a bullet in the taste buds. On Monday, I did a quick Google for sweet potato recipes and found this little gem by Lillian Chou, on the Gourmet website:

Roasted Japanese Sweet Potatoes with Scallion Butter
Ingredients
8 small slender Japanese or Garnet sweet potatoes (4 to 5 pounds total)
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, well softened
1 1/2 tablespoons miso paste (preferably white)
3 tablespoons finely chopped scallion

Preparation

Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in upper third.
Prick potatoes all over with a fork and put on a foil-lined large baking sheet.
Bake until very soft when squeezed, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
While potatoes bake, stir together butter, miso, and scallion until combined.
Slit hot potatoes lengthwise and, using oven mitts, push in sides to puff up potato. Serve with some scallion butter in center of each and with additional scallion butter on the side.

    Cooks’ notes:

    • Scallion butter can be made 4 days ahead and chilled, covered. Bring to warm room temperature and stir before using.
    • Sweet potatoes can be roasted (but not cut) 4 hours ahead and kept at room temperature, covered with foil. Reheat potatoes on a baking sheet on middle rack of a 350°F oven until heated through, about 20 minutes.

    It tastes fantastic. The combination of the sweetness of the potato, the saltiness and umami of the white miso, the creaminess of the butter and the bite of the spring onions is a balancing act of genius.

    I’m not sure if this is a traditional Japanese recipe or not (the inclusion of butter would rule against that, it seems to me), but wherever it comes from, it gets two thumbs up from me – and a permanent place in my recipe repertoire.

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