The sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) is large, starchy, sweet-tasting,
tuberous roots that are an important root vegetable. The young leaves
and shoots are sometimes eaten as greens.
The edible tuberous root is long and tapered, with a smooth skin whose
colour ranges between red, purple, brown and beige. Its flesh ranges from
beige through yellow, orange, and purple.
Besides simple starches, sweet potatoes are rich in complex carbohydrates,
dietary fiber, beta carotene (a vitamin A equivalent nutrient), vitamin C,
and vitamin B6. Pink, yellow and green varieties are high in carotene, the
precursor of vitamin A.
Sweet potatoes are native to the tropical parts of South America, and were
domesticated there at least 5000 years ago.
The Sweet potato is characterized as being dry and slightly sweet.
It has a smooth skin and when freshly cut the potato releases a sweet aromatic scent.
Keep completely covered when cooking to prevent discoloring.
Peeled sweet potatoes must be put immediately into cold water for the same reason.
Pies, muffins, pudding, flans and custards love this vegetable's flavor and texture.
Sweet Potatoes offer a source of protein, carbohydrates,
vitamin A, vitamin C, thiamine, niacin, riboflavin and potassium.