The week of Thanksgiving always seems to be packed full of grocery shopping, prepping, cooking and baking. This year is turning out to be no different, with the added stress and fun of taking a trip to Tokyo this past weekend. We’re not hosting this year so one of my biggest challenges, and one I’m sure many people also face, has been trying to come up with healthy meals for the rest of the weekend. With Thanksgiving day being such a food-centric holiday, I never want the other meals to be heavy or time consuming and I certainly do not want to go out and eat unhealthy restaurant food.
Sweet potatoes are one my favorite foods. Besides being an excellent source of Vitamin A and many other nutrients, I love the sweetness they lend to so many dishes. I learned, while researching for our move to Okinawa, that sweet potatoes are a large part of the Okinawan diet. If this wasn’t exciting enough, I realized that Okinawa doesn’t have the orange variety we are used to in the U.S., but the purple variety, called beni-imo.
For those of you who don’t know me, I should explain. Purple is my favorite color. By favorite color, I mean, my life is purple. My phone, laptop, suitcase, even baking supplies in my kitchen–it’s all purple. So the fact that Okinawa has purple sweet potatoes, well, I knew my life was never going to be the same. Okinawans love, and have created, beni-imo everything. Ice cream, Kit-Kats, pastries–if something can be flavored, it will be beni-imo and it will be purple. It’s delicious and amazing and makes me love Okinawa that much more.