A Long Hiatus and a Sweet Potato Recipe

Maybe you’ve noticed…

I took a pretty long posting hiatus where I spent seven months throwing myself entirely into work.

I’ve spent most of my time since September in Portland, Oregon for work. City guide to come!

As things are (finally) calming down enough for me to take a breath in and take a look at this blog again–I realize how much I miss it.

Firstly, cooking in my own kitchen. The last several months have been a whirlwind of hotels, Air bnbs and takeout. I miss my home kitchen, my spice cabinet, Vitamix, my sourdough starter, etc. etc.

Secondly, the creative outlet that this blog affords. I feel like I’ve taken very little time for myself lately. When I started this blog (almost a year ago now!) I found the process of planning posts, envisioning photos, styling, and writing to be almost therapeutic. The absence of that process has been sorely felt. I feel it almost doesn’t matter if anyone is reading, watching–This blog is a diary of my right brain. But it is also a project straight from my heart.

I hope that some will find something worth seeing here, worth commenting on, all in the grander hope of creating a space where people of similar interests may come to discuss, ask questions, and troubleshoot.

But if this little corner of the internet remains mine alone–that’s OK too.

So, after way too many months, and a rather formidable start to 2017, I give you: comfort food.

If I’ve learned anything in the last seven months–it’s the dangers of neglecting self care. Separate post to come on this, but long story short, I forewent self-care in a big way over the past several months and my body paid me back.

There is no shame in taking the time and effort to take good care of yourself.

Part of that is with good, wholesome, and yes, comforting food.

There are few foods more comforting than a baked potato.

However, the indulgence does not have to be an unhealthy one. A little creativity with toppings will help you resist the urge to smother the potato in butter and salt.

Ingredients:

2 medium sized sweet potatoes (serves two)

1 bunch red kale (or whichever variety is available)

1 can chickpeas, or about 2 cups cooked if using fresh beans

2 ripe avocados

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon soy sauce or liquid aminos

salt and black pepper to taste

Instructions:

For the sweet potatoes:

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit

Stab the potatoes a few times with a fork, wrap each potato with aluminum foil

Place in oven as it is preheating

Depending on the size of your potato, it should be done in 45 minutes to an hour

The potatoes are done when you can easily press a fork through the skin and flesh. If your fork meets resistance, put them back in the oven for another 5 to 10 minutes.

While the potatoes cook, make the crispy chickpeas, sauteed greens, and avocado mash.

For the chickpeas:

Drain the chickpeas (if using canned) and spread on a nonstick cookie sheet or regular cookie sheet with parchment paper

Drizzle with olive oil, salt, pepper and sweet paprika

Place in the oven below the sweet potatoes.

Cook for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until crispy.

Pull them out in about 15 minutes and carefully shake the sheet, or move the chickpeas around with a spoon to ensure they are fully coated and cooking evenly.

For the greens:

Chop roughly

Heat the olive oil in a medium saute pan

When hot, add the garlic

Once the garlic is fragrant, add the greens, sprinkle with salt and pepper and cover, reducing the heat

Watch the pan, uncover and stir the greens once they begin to look wilted. Saute a minute or two more, then cover and set aside.

For the avocado mash:

Scoop the flesh of the two avocados into a bowl

Add 1 clove of garlic (minced)

Add the soy sauce or liquid aminos

Sprinkle with salt, black pepper–you can also add a little cayenne or crushed red pepper if you like the heat

Mash and stir with a fork.

Assemble your stuffed potatoes:

Slice each potato in half

Layer first with the kale, then about half the chickpeas, and top with a large scoop of the avocado mash.

Serve.

 

More about Kaitlin

I’m a food lover, health researcher, amateur cook, recovering journalist, nutrition student and avid kitchen experimenter. I live in the woods with a boyfriend and a dog.

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