I saw this recipe in the Thanksgiving edition of Real Simple Magazine and decided to use it at Christmas.  I thought it would be different and maybe a little healthier than mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes are healthy right?  The caramelized pecans on top really made the dish for me.  Here is the recipe…

3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the baking dish 
2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1⁄4-inch-thick rounds 
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (2 ounces) 
kosher salt and black pepper
3/4 cup chopped pecans 
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves 
pinch of cayenne pepper 

Heat oven to 375° F. Oil a shallow 2 ½- to 3-quart baking dish.

In a large bowl, toss the sweet potatoes with the Parmesan, 2 tablespoons of the oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper; transfer to the prepared baking dish. Cover tightly with foil and bake until tender, 45 to 50 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the pecans, sugar, thyme, cayenne, the remaining tablespoon of oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ⅛ teaspoon black pepper.

Remove the foil from the baking dish, sprinkle the pecan mixture over the potatoes, and continue to bake, uncovered, until the pecans are toasted, 10 to 12 minutes.