Wednesday 5th April 2017: Sweet Potato – Mid Week Recipes

It is now 11.45am and it has been a long yet productive morning.

After waking early to bake a few cakes and make some raw energy balls for some customers, I decided to head out on a beautiful sunny morning to get my walk out of the way.

As I needed to get some ‘bits’ from town, I chose to walk through Bedford Park (which was beautiful and quiet at that time of morning – 8.30am) into town, pick up my shopping and then head back via Castle Road and Goldington Road.

As the children are off school now for the Easter Holidays both the roads and town centre were very quiet making it easy and quick for me to get out and about.

So having arrived home moments ago, feeling hungry, I started off by making some porridge from jumbo oats and red quinoa and simply added a pinch of Himalayan salt, 1/8 tsp coconut oil, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, water & 1/4 cup of almond milk and let it cook.  Meanwhile, I made a fresh juice.  I added:  beetroot, celery, cucumber, carrot, fresh turmeric and ginger.  So refreshing.

What a delightful breakfast (or should I say brunch as we are nearing mid-day) and juice I had and felt even more deserving after my long walk, clocking up 11,000 steps!

 

So now I need to catch up on emails and some admin work and as you can see from my picture, I am enjoying my porridge whilst working away in my home-office!

 

So today is now all about sweet potatoes………

I wanted to focus on this delicious and nutritious vegetable known as the ‘Sweet Potato’.

During my Macrobiotics course I have been using this very versatile and nutritious vegetable more and more and have learnt how to enjoy its freshness in a soup, as a starter, as a snack, as a main meal and more importantly, to curb my sweet craving, as a dessert, in the form of a chocolate brownie…..yes you heard me right…. a brownie!

Firstly, I wanted to share with you the benefits of this orange (some times white) root vegetable.

Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamin A (in the form of beta-carotene). They are also a very good source of vitamin C, manganese, copper, pantothenic acid and vitamin B6. Additionally, they are a good source of potassium, dietary fiber, niacin, vitamin B1, vitamin B2 and phosphorus.

Sweet potatoes are naturally sweet-tasting but their natural sugars are slowly released into the bloodstream, helping to ensure a balanced and regular source of energy, without the blood sugar spikes linked to fatigue and weight gain therefore a great sugar substitute in cakes and brownies.

They are very versatile. Try them roasted (chips), puréed (smoothies, cakes and snacks) steamed or baked (jacket potato). You can add them to soups and stews, or grill and place on top of leafy greens for a delicious salad. I have shared with you a couple of my favourite recipes below that I am sure you will Love!

Sweet Potato, Black Bean & Red Pepper Stew

Serves 4

2 medium sweet potatoes, chopped into chunks
2 red peppers, sliced
1/2 of a small fresh red chilli (deseeded and finely chopped) or 1/4 tsp of dried chilli flakes
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 cup sliced cabbage or 1 medium onion finely sliced
1 can black beans
1 stalk of celery finely chopped
1 can chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp olive/sunflower oil
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp fresh/ground turmeric
1/2 cup of fresh coriander
Salt & pepper to taste

In a bowl put 1 tbsp of oil, the sweet potatoes, cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of cumin, 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika and rub the spices into the potato, place on a baking tray and cook in a pre-heated oven for 25 minutes at 180C.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan on medium heat, start to sauté the cabbage/onions and celery in the remaining oil for a couple minutes, then add the peppers and cook for a further 5 minutes.  Add the black beans and mix, then add the chopped tomatoes along with the rest of the spices.  Simmer gently for 15 minutes.

When the sweet potatoes are ready, add them to the stew and mix.  The stew is now ready to be served.

I serve this with brown rice and side salad of mixed green leaves, spinach, cherry tomatoes and avocado in a simple olive oil and lemon vinaigrette dressing.

There you have it, a complete vegan, gluten free, healthy and nutritious meal prepared in 30 minutes!

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Sweet Potato, Chilli & Coconut Soup

Serves 4

2 medium sweet potatoes, placed on a baking tray, baked whole in the oven for 40 minutes at 180C.
1/2 of a small fresh red chilli (deseeded and finely chopped) or 1/4 tsp of dried chilli flakes
3 stalk of celery finely chopped
3 medium carrots sliced
2 medium white potato
1/4 tsp of coconut oil
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp fresh/ground turmeric
1/2 cup of fresh coriander, keep 2 tbsp for garnish
Salt & pepper to taste
1 small can of coconut milk

In a saucepan, put the coconut oil and gently sauté the celery, carrots and white potato.  If the mixture sticks, add a few tablespoons of boiling water.  Add the rest of the herbs and spices and around 6 cups of boiling water.  Turn the heat down and gently simmer for 30 minutes.

Remove the sweet potato from the oven and carefully remove the skin.  Put the flesh of the sweet potato in the saucepan with the other soup ingredients.  With the skins, lay them on a flat baking tray, sprinkle with some salt, black pepper and Italian herbs and place in the oven for between 6-10 minutes until crispy.

When the vegetables are tender (check with a fork), add the flesh of the sweet potato and the can of coconut milk and blend the mixture until smooth.

When serving the soup, add a few pieces of the sweet potato skins (instead of croutons) and a few leaves of the coriander leaves as garnish.  Delicious and soooooo tasty.

 

I hope you enjoy my updates and sharings.  If you do, please feedback to me.  Let me know if you want to know more about certain foods, want to know how to cook certain foods, or simply would like to share your own wonderful recipes, news, information and pictures.

I look forward to hearing from you, until soon have a lovely day x

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