March 21, 2013

Pain Patate - Guestpost by Mireille (Guestpost Series # 10)

Happy to announce the revival of Guestposts on my blog. The 2013 kicks off with an exquisite Pain Patate (Sweet Potato Bread) by my dear friend Mireille.  I met this wonderful lady ,albeit virtually on the blogosphere through Blogging Marathon, and every theme she chooses, she delivers with aplomb – be it Indian Cuisine or Traditional dishes like Murukku or Samosa, Mir (as she is affectionately known within our group) treats us to a virtual treat everytime. 

Based out of New York, she is a big foodie herself and blogs at Chef Mireille’s Global Creations. Check out her space to have a gastronomic treat from around the world. Thanks Mir, for doing this guestpost.. I shall let Mir do the talking in the next few lines…
I was so happy and honored when Kalyani contacted me to be a guest blogger on her space.  I became acquainted with Kalyani’s blog due to our mutual participation in Srivalli’s Blogging Marathon.  Kalyani’s blog Sizzling Tastebuds is full of easy to do mostly Indian recipes, although she does experiment with global flavors once in a while.  For me, a non Indian, she presents her recipes in an easy to follow format that I am sure I can do any of them!

When she contacted me, I knew the recipe had to be Vegetarian and eggless.  I decided to take this opportunity to present a traditional food from my own culture that most of her readers would probably be unfamiliar with.  Before we get to the recipe, let me tell you a little about myself and my cultural background.

Readers of my blog probably think I’m schizophrenic because one day I may have an Indonesian recipe, followed by a Peruvian recipe and then followed by a Trinidadian recipe.  However, I come from an extremely multi-cultural family.  On my father’s side, I am Haitian – 1/3 of the island of Hispanola, with its French influenced cuisine.  My mother’s side gets really complicated, mostly because her father is from Suriname.  Suriname is one of the most multi-cultural countries in the world with large Indian, Indonesian, Chinese and African populations where intermarriage between the races is commonplace.  Due to marriages, all of these cultures are represented within my family.  Additionally, my mom’s grandfather was from India.  Although I think many Indian bloggers are surprised at how much I know about Indian food, if you had ever been to Suriname, you would not be.

I grew up in a household where the cuisine that was cooked differed from day to day.  Being exposed to so many cultures from a young age gave me a very wide perspective.  When I became interested in culinary arts, it was just natural for me to explore even more into different cultures, not necessarily represented within my family.  Now that you know all about me, let’s get to the recipe.

Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the world.  Not only have they been subjected to very corrupt governments that has destroyed their economy, but every natural disaster seems to strike them from hurricanes to earthquakes.  Starchy root vegetables like cassava (yucca), plantain and yam are very common.  They grow abundantly and provide people with the natural energy needed for hard, manual labor.  This is a very common dessert using patate, the purple skinned white fleshed sweet potato/yam.  There are many different names for this vegetable depending where you live – coloccasia, batata, boniato or tropical yam.

I have made the sugar optional in this recipe because although it is traditionally included I left it out once in error and it ended up still being a delicious dessert because of the natural sweetness from the sweet potato, banana, raisins and coconut.  This makes it naturally diabetic friendly, even though kids may require the additional sugar.  The older diabetic relatives were so happy that they finally had a dessert they could enjoy, without any processed sugar!

Pain Patate (translated literally as Sweet Potato Bread)
Serves 12
2 lbs. sweet potato/colocassia, grated using the fine side of a box grater
1 banana, mashed
½  cup firmly packed brown sugar (optional)
½ cup raisins
2 teaspoons ginger, grated
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 ½ cups coconut milk
Grated zest of 1 lime
½ cup freshly grated coconut (or frozen grated coconut, defrosted)
3 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Butter a 9x13 baking dish.
In a large bowl, combine the sweet potato and banana and mix well.  Add coconut, raisins, lime zest, sugar (if using), salt, butter, ginger and all of the spices and mix well.
Slowly add the evaporated milk and the coconut milk, a little at a time, until thoroughly incorporated.  Transfer to the prepared baking dish.
Bake for 1 ½ hours, until a knife inserted comes out clean.  Let cool before slicing and removing from baking dish. 
This is a great party pleaser and what you can do is make it without the sugar and then for those who require it, they can drizzle a little honey over it.  This keeps everybody happy!


  1. nice recipe Mireille ; thanks for sharing Kalyani :)

  2. thanks for the honor and opportunity!


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