These are colorful and light as can be. Sweet potato dumplings are wonderful with braised meats, smoked meats, in chicken stew, or on a brunch buffet. They are adaptable to savory sauces or topped with maple syrup. Leftover dumplings can be sliced and fried in butter until golden. Serve them with eggs for breakfast or with the evening meal.
Vermont Common Crackers have been made by the same folks since 1828. They are the crackers that long filled cracker barrels in general stores. You can find Vermont Common Crackers at www.OrtonBros.com If you live in a place that doesn’t carry them substitute Goya Snack Crackers.
18 golf ball size dumplings
2 lb sweet potatoes, 2 large (900 mL)
½ cup all-purpose flour (100 g)
12 Vermont Common Crackers, crushed to yield 1 cup
1 tsp salt (5 mL)
2 Tbsp butter (30 g)
2 Tbsp walnut pieces, toasted until fragrant, finely chopped (30 mL)
Wash and dry the sweet potatoes. Puncture each in several places with a fork. Microwave at high level for 10 minutes. Allow to steam in their jackets for 5 minutes and then peel.
Pass them through a potato ricer into a mixing bowl , or mash them to a smooth paste.
Pound the Vermont Common Crackers to a fine powder. You can do this in a plastic bag with a mallet, or in a food processor.
Combine the sweet potatoes, cracker crumbs, flour, salt, and nutmeg and work into a soft dough.
Flour a sheet pan, and have a small bowl of flour nearby so you can coat your hands with flour as you make the dumplings.
Wash and dry your hands and coat them with flour. Make dumplings the size of a golf ball, about 1½ inches in diameter (3.8 cm), and place on the floured baking sheet.
Preheat oven to 300° F (150° C). Put the butter into a shallow heatproof serving dish and put in the oven to melt the butter.
Bring a pot of water to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. Cook one-third to one half of the dumplings at a time. You want the water to remain simmering, and you don’t want to crowd the dumplings. When the dumplings float to the surface, about 2 minutes, cook them for a further 10 minutes so the dough cooks all the way through.
Toast the walnut pieces in a small skillet over medium heat until fragrant. Remove to a cutting board and chop them finely.
Remove the dumplings with a slotted spoon to the dish containing the melted butter, and roll them around in it. Return to the oven. Cook the remaining dumplings and add to the serving dish. Sprinkle walnuts over the dumplings and serve.