IN SEASON - October, November
The sweet potato has yellow or orange flesh, and its thin skin may either be white, yellow, orange, red or purple. Sometimes this root vegetable will be shaped like a potato, being short and blocky with rounded ends, while other times it will be longer with tapered ends. There is often much confusion between sweet potatoes and yams; the moist-fleshed, orange-colored root vegetable that is often called a "yam" is actually a sweet potato.
Store Sweet Potatoes between 55°F and 65°F in a dark, dry, cool place, for up to one month, or use within one week if stored at room temperature. If refrigerated, their natural sugar will turn to starch and ruin the flavor.
If you steam your sweet potatoes whole or in chunks, this cuts down on the cooking time. Baking in the oven usually takes an hour or more. Remember not to refrigerate them, and scrub them just before cooking and be sure to enjoy the skins.