Sweet potatoes are not only tasty and filling, but also oh-so-versatile. The root vegetable is the key ingredient in popular American specialties like sweet potato pie and sweet potato soufflé. The only thing we don’t really love about them is the thick skin that can be a little difficult to remove. Here’s the trick: boiling allows the skin to come right off.

Wash the sweet potatoes under running water to remove excess dirt. Place them in a pot and cover them with water.

Place the pot on the stove over high heat. Cover the pot and bring the sweet potatoes to a boil. After about 10 minutes, when the sweet potatoes have softened, remove the lid and puncture the sweet potatoes with a sharp paring knife to speed up the cooking process.

Cover the pot again and let the sweet potatoes finish cooking for an additional 20 minutes, or until tender. A sweet potato is done when you can drive a knife straight through without resistance. When done, remove the pot from the heat and pour out the hot water. Cool the sweet potatoes by letting them sit in a colander, or by placing them under cold, running water.

Using a paring knife, slice into the sweet potato’s skin. Peel off the skin, similar to the way you’d peel a banana. Alternatively, cut off the sweet potato’s tip and scrape off the skin with the knife.