Brown sugar, butter, bourbon: Spike the sweet potatoes for a spirited Thanksgiving

If you went to the Pop Up: Noodle Shop this summer at Newfields, you might have wondered about the mysterious "Emma" behind the popular Emma's Noodles dish on the menu. Emma Ryan started as a seasonal hospitality associate in the Beer Garden in 2017, thinking she'd only work through the summer. But one day, Joshua Ratliff, director of Culinary Arts said to here "You look like you need to be a baker. Do you want to learn to make bread?" 

By fall 2018, she was promoted to culinary arts apprentice. To prepare for the opening of Pop Up: Noodle Shop, Emma spent a week in Columbus, learning to make pasta at the Henry Social Club and in the Cummins kitchen. Back at Newfields, she and the culinary staff tweaked the techniques and measurements until the ended up with the perfect ramen for "Emma's Noodles". 

While Emma prepares for February's Pop Up: Pie Shop, we asked her to share a favorite family holiday recipe. 


Bourbon Sweet Potatoes 


3 pounds sweet potatoes 

1 tablespoon of salt 

3-4 tablespoon bourbon whiskey

4 tablespoon butter or non-dairy butter replacement 

4 tablespoon brown sugar

2 teaspoon vanilla extract 



Place potato chunks in a pot and cover with water. 

Add a tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Cook until tender (about 15 to 20 minutes). 

Drain the cooked potatoes. Return the warm pot to the stove top on the lowest heat. Add butter and bourbon, stirring until the two are blended. 

Add the drained potatoes back to the pot. 

Stir in the brown sugar and vanilla extract. 

Mash everything up with a potato masher. 

Taste! If necessary, add more butter, bourbon, salt, brown sugar, or even some black pepper. 

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