Sweet-Potato Puree with Toasted Meringue

Photo: John Kernick
Prep Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 35 mins

Adapted from Anne Quatrano's Summerland: Recipes for Celebrating With Southern Hospitality (Rizzoli).


Sweet Potatoes

  • 4 ½ pounds sweet potatoes (about 6 medium), preferably Garnet or Jewel

  • 1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for baking dish

  • cup maple syrup, preferably grade A

  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger

  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

  • 1 ¾ teaspoons coarse salt


  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature

  • teaspoon cream of tartar

  • teaspoon coarse salt

  • 1 ½ cups sugar


  1. Sweet potatoes: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prick each potato in several places with the tines of a fork. Bake until very soft, 1 to 1 1/2 hours, depending on size. Let stand until cool enough to handle.

  2. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Halve potatoes, scoop out flesh, and transfer to a food processor; puree until smooth. Add butter, syrup, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, white pepper, and salt; pulse to combine. Transfer to prepared dish, cover, and bake until hot, about 10 minutes.

  3. Meringue: Meanwhile, beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt on low speed until frothy, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to high; beat until soft peaks form, about 1 minute. Gradually add sugar, beating until thick, glossy peaks form, about 5 minutes. Spoon meringue evenly over potatoes. Holding a small kitchen torch at a 90-degree angle, 3 inches from surface of meringue, move flame back and forth over meringue until it starts to brown. (Or broil 6 to 8 inches from heat source, about 1 minute.) Serve immediately.

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