A simple, savory and filling breakfast fit for whatever Mother Nature throws at us this winter. The scent of sausage cooking in the kitchen reminds me of the fairgrounds in the summer. With a minimal amount of spices, the flavor of the sweet potatoes and sausage shines through easily. If you don’t have sweet potatoes or yams and don’t feel like running to the store, simply replace with white potatoes, It’s Just That Simple! (Gotta add my motto in there sometime). 1 large sweet potato, about 1 pound

1/4 pound hot Italian sausage, partially frozen

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 teaspoon minced garlic in oil

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

Salt and black pepper to taste

3 eggs

Cornbread squares, optional

Peel and cube sweet potato. Boil until crisp tender over high heat, about 4-5 minutes depending on the size of your cubes. Immediately drain and cool in refrigerator, uncovered.

Slice the sausage into 1/4-inch thick slices; set aside. In a large skillet(I use a cast-iron frying pan for best results)add the butter and garlic. Over medium heat, cook garlic until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Add the sausage slices and continue cooking, and frequently stirring, until no longer pink in the middle, about 3-4 minutes. Add the diced, cooked potato, onion powder, celery seed, salt and pepper to taste. Cook until potatoes have started to brown and everything is heated through, another 5-7 minutes, adding more butter if necessary to prevent sticking.

Meanwhile, cook eggs to your desired preparation.

To serve, ladle sausage mixture onto 3 serving plates and top each with a cooked egg. Served with a cornbread square and you have breakfast to hold you over for the morning.

Chef Jim Baley -- The Yankee Chef -- is a noted food columnist, cookbook author and the foremost New England Food Historian. He is a third generation chef and historian and lives in Maine with his wife and four children. He welcomes feedback at theyankeechef@aol.com.