Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Soy Honey Glaze: On not becoming THAT mother

As a teacher, I often experienced those mothers who refused to accept what I was saying about their child as being true.  They'd make excuses for the child's behavior, explain away the lack of responsibility in doing homework and would never take my comments about their child to heart.  They couldn't believe that what I was saying was true.  I wasn't a mother when I did the core of my teaching, and I always thought to myself, "I will not be like those mothers.  I will listen to the teachers and hear comments about my child and take them to heart."

I regularly ask Daughters' teachers if they are having problems with the girls.  Generally speaking, my girls are fine so there isn't much to worry about.  With Son's entry into school, I have another teacher with whom to interface and find out about his progress.

Each day, upon picking up, I asked the teachers, "How did he do today?"   Initially, I did have some concerns because Son is the only one who brings his snack daily from home.  I pack him something completely different from his peers and I do it for his own protection in terms of allergies.  He didn't seem to mind it and on the whole, his teachers seemed pleased with his progress and his enjoyment of school.  I felt good and felt as if he was adjusting well and I had nothing to worry about.

However, last week, I asked my routine, "How did he do today?" question and got the answer I was not expecting.

"Oh - he cried a little bit today during movement time."

"What?  He cried?"

"Yes, he cried repeatedly and refused to participate.  He wasn't interested in his movement time."

Immediately rapid fire thoughts went through my head.  My son?  My child did not want movement?  Well - why?  He's the most active, the most athletic, the most joyous, the happiest kid I know. Why would he cry during movement class?

"Did something happen before class that upset him?" I asked.

"No no.  He walked over quietly and then when we got there, he began to cry."

"Well, I'm very very surprised that he behaved that way.  He's really very very athletic," I tried to explain.  "Something must have happened to upset him or make him not want to participate. Because really, he's so athletic and loves physical activity.  I mean - he loves BASKETBALL!"

His teacher gave a strange look and said, "I'm sure he'll be fine next week."

I went home and realized, wow, how could I be that sensitive to the simple comment of his tears during movement?  The teacher simply was giving me some information about Son, to help me know what to talk to him about and just to give me feedback about the day.  She wasn't doing anything else but that and I took the opportunity to freak out.  I immediately went into some mommy defensive mode and I am pretty sure it wasn't all that attractive.

Yesterday  he had movement again and just as his teacher predicted,  he was fine.  And I was fine too.  I am breathing in and out and trying to remember that I don't need to overreact to everything.  (Although I definitely tend to.)  I told Son, "Good job on doing movement" and he replied, "Oh it's fun."  Much ado about nothing.

This potato dish is really delicious and it's easy to execute.  Son loves it and will eat almost a pound of potatoes on his own if I let him.   (I don't let him.)  It's a lovely side to some steak, chicken or even fish and the flavors are sweet, salt and sharp, which lends itself well to a delicious treat.  Try not to over cook the potatoes, or they will be unattractively mushy.  And don't worry - these are not much ado about nothing.  They are little ado about something.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Soy Honey Glaze
Adapted from Japanese Light by Kimiko Barber
Serves 4

1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled
3 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
pinch of salt

2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 350. Cut sweet potatoes into ice cubed dice. Toss potatoes with vegetable and sesame oil and a pinch of salt. Place on a cookie sheet in a single layer and roast for 30 to 40 minutes or until edges are crisp.

While potatoes are baking, mix honey, soy sauce and grated ginger for the glaze. Drizzle over the potatoes and place 4 to 6 inches from broiler. Broil 5-7 minutes shaking baking sheet occasionally until nicely browned on the outside. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve.

Printable recipe

sweet potatoes, sweet life


Joy said...

The dish looks great. I completely understand what you mean about making excuses for the kids. I always feel bad when my daughter starts to act out.

Margie said...

Love the idea of a glaze to finish off the potatoes. The honey soy flavors sound delish with the sweets. Never heard of "ice cubed dice" before but that's a great description.

jesica @ pencil Kitchen said...

Hmmmm... I love all these roasted Roots Glazed to perfection.... Pumpkins and Sweet potatoes especially... Soy honey glaze sounds interesting :)

myFudo said...

This dish looks so sweet... sweet potatoes and honey wow!! my kid would love this. feel free to stop by my site for a free giveaway

online shopping said...

In my view one and all may read this.

melwang said...

Love your blog, i've tried out a couple recipes from it. Thanks for posting them.
My son (2 yrs) loves the roasted sweet potatoes. it makes a good healthy snack! and i found a new way to enjoy sweet potatoes.

Crafty Beth said...

I love this recipe--it's quickly becoming a go-to! I have a feeling this glaze would be pretty yummy on other things too...


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