Spiral Sweet Potatoes with Pecan Butter

These spiral sweet potatoes with pecan butter are a twist on a favorite Thanksgiving dish for us. It’s a bit sweet, a lot easy, and very tasty. You can make it ahead of time and cook it on-site (aka my sister-in-law’s house), in the oven or on a grill (which is how I do it). The beauty of cooking sides on the grill at Thanksgiving is that it helps free up the oven, which is so often crammed full.
spiral-sweet-potatoes-with-pecan-butterBecause the sweet potatoes are cut into thin (but not too thin) spirals, they will cook faster than whole or sliced sweet potatoes, so keep an eye on them. The crunchy sweet topping is absolutely fantastic. If your guests like their sides a bit on the sweet side don’t hesitate to double the topping.

Spiral Sweet Potatoes with Pecan Butter
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 4 large sweet potatoes, peeled, spiraled (I used the large blade. You don't want super thin spirals)
  • 1 large sweet or Spanish onion, sliced thin and separated into rings
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
Instructions
  1. Preheat grill to medium or oven to 350 F degrees.
  2. Place potato slices and onion rings on a large sheet of aluminum foil (you might need to divide the mixture between more than one piece of foil). Drizzle with oil.
  3. Place another sheet of foil over potatoes and seal along edges.
  4. Place on grill or in oven for 20-25 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
  5. In a small bowl, mix the butter, sugar, salt and cinnamon. Stir in pecans.
  6. Open packets and top with pecan butter. Serve.

Pecan Smoked Shrimp

I had my Weber Smokey Mountain smoker fired up the other day, cooking a bunch of turkey breasts. After they were done, the fire was still nice and hot, so I grabbed a pound of gulf shrimp, seasoned them, skewered them, and put them over the smoke. Shrimp don’t take long to cook, so in about 30 minutes they were done. I let them cool slightly and served them in a great Cobb salad.

These pecan smoked shrimp were only lightly seasoned. I didn’t want the shrimp to be particularly spicy so they didn’t overpower my salad. If I was going to use them in shrimp cocktail I would’ve increased the cayenne just a little more, and used cocktail sauce to cool off the heat.
Pecan Smoked ShrimpI used 21-25 count shrimp, which are a little big for a salad, but still quite ok. Of course, bigger shrimp are easier to skewer, and there are fewer of them in a pound so they shell and devein quicker!

Pecan Smoked Shrimp
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • Bamboo skewers
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon freshly parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Pecan wood chunks
Instructions
  1. Place bamboo skewers in water and let soak.
  2. Place the shrimp in a medium bowl.
  3. Drizzle with the oil.
  4. Add remaining ingredients except the wood. Stir, cover, and refrigerate until ready to cook.
  5. Fire up your smoker for low-and-slow cooking, 225 F. Add a few chunks of pecan wood.
  6. After the smoker is ready, place shrimp on skewers.
  7. Transfer to smoker and smoke for 30-35 minutes or until cooked through.