Tag Archives: Sweet potato

Spicy salmon and sweet potato cakes

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When I’m planning a party, a predictable sequence of events ensues. It goes something like this:

3 weeks until party: “This will be easy; I’ll just do A and call it a day.”
2 weeks until party: “You know what would be cute… A, B, and C. Definitely doing A, B, and C.”
1 week until party: “Ooooh, D and E would be so perfect. There’s really no point in doing A, B and C if I don’t do D and E too… That’s it; I’m doing D and E.”
4 days until party: “Just saw F and G on pinterest. HAVE to do F and G. So cute; I die!”
1 day until party: Huz sees the insanity of A through G unfolding:  “I thought you were just doing A?!” Me: “I know, but I just saw H, and it. is. beyond. I have to do it.”

Well, I’m at it again! This time I’m hosting a brunch, and I’m in the throws of menu planning. Let’s just call this recipe “A”, otherwise known as the beginning of the snowball.

Spicy salmon and sweet potato cakes, makes 12 small cakes

-2 medium sweet potatoes or yams (makes about 1 1/2 cups mashed sweet potato)
-5 scallions
-2 T cilantro
-2 T butter (I used earth balance)
-2 6 oz cans salmon
-1 jalapeno pepper
-3/4 c frozen corn kernels
-2 eggs
-1 lemon
-2 t cumin
-salt & pepper
-cooking spray

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Let’s do this:
First thing’s first. Ya gotta cook the sweet potatoes. You can microwave them, but I made extra baked potatoes the night before so mine were baked (I usually bake mine for about 35-40 minutes at 375).

If you microwaved your potatoes, then preheat the oven to 350. At this point, I put my butter in a ramekin and stuck it in the oven to soften it. You can also microwave for about 20-30 seconds to soften. Either way, be careful not to burn it!

Chop your onions and cilantro. (remove the butter if you haven’t already – place in on top of the stove to keep it warm!)
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Zest your lemon and dice the jalapeno, removing the seeds.
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Drain the salmon and add to a large bowl.  Add in the scallions, cilantro, and corn.
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Peel the skin off your sweet potato and then mash with a fork.
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Add to the salmon mixture, along with the lemon zest, jalapeno, eggs, and butter. Stir gently to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
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Spray your muffin tin with cooking spray if necessary. Divide the mixture evenly into the 12 muffin cups.
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Bake for 25-30 minutes.
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I served mine with a small salad; but at the party they will be served with a frittata, yogurt parfaits, fruit salad, cranberry cocktails, coffee, and lots of cookies. Of course.

Happy Holidays!

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Sweet potato scones

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I always thought scones were hard to make. I don’t know who planted this idea in my head or why no one ever told me how easy they are (I’m lookin’ at you, Stacy!). Now that I’ve seen the light, I forsee a very scone-heavy fall coming (also a molly-heavy fall if I keep up this pace of scone-eating).

The first time I made this recipe, I kept it simple and made plain sweet potato scones. On subsequent attempts, I added in chopped apple, cranberries, and white chocolate chips. All are really good, but the plain one is not very sweet, so if you are like me and prefer your scones coated in sugar (as far as I can tell, Starbucks invented this with their pumpkin scone) you might add in apples or something to sweeten ’em up a bit.

Next time you make sweet potatoes for dinner, make one extra and save it for this recipe! (I bet this would work with canned sweet potato or pumpkin too)

Sweet Potato Scones, makes 8 scones, adapted from this recipe
-2 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (I found a new sprouted whole wheat flour at Whole Foods and it’s true love)
-1 t baking powder
-1 t baking soda
-1/2 t salt
-1 t cinnamon
-1 c mashed, cooked sweet potato (a little less than one medium sweet potato)
-1/2 c coconut oil, plus 1 T for brushing over the tops of the scones
-1 t vanilla
-1/4 cup maple syrup
-optional: 1/2 cup add-ins (apple, cranberries, white choc chips, or some combination of the three!)
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Preheat oven to 350. Add your dry ingredients to a large bowl (surprise benefit: this is a one bowl recipe!): flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon.
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Combine with a whisk.
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Add your wet ingredients: sweet potato, coconut oil, vanilla, maple syrup.
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Form a big ol’ dough ball.
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Knead in your add-ins (cranberries and white chocolate chips shown here).
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Form a circle that is about the size of my outstretched hand. Just kidding, make a circle about 7 inches in diameter (yes, I have tiny, useless, can’t-even-reach-a-full-octave hands, it was the bane of my piano-playing career).
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Cut into 8 pieces and add to a cookie sheet lined with a silpat or parchment paper.
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Brush the tops with a little coconut oil.
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Bake for about 18 minutes (when I added apples, it took longer – more like 21 mins!). Enjoy with a latte <squeals>!!

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Curried sweet potato and quinoa wraps

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First things first: A very big birthday shout out to my bestie! True to form, it’s a gazillion degrees out today. In the 25+ years we have been friends, I’m not sure we have a picture from her birthday where my hair isn’t freaking the hell out and my eye makeup isn’t rolling down my cheeks. Que sera, sera.

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like every year starting on January 1st the temperature increases a tiny bit each day, reaching a dramatic crescendo on July 7th, when every restaurant/bar’s air conditioning breaks. If I wasn’t so grateful for her friendship, I’d probably hate this day. Love you, Jo!

Curried Sweet Potato & Quinoa Wraps, serves about 4, inspired by Healthy Happy Life
-2 sweet potatoes
-1 T oil (I used coconut, but any oil will work)
-1 c quinoa
-2 t curry powder
-1/2 c frozen peas
-1/2 c raw cashews
-2 T maple syrup
-1 T rice vinegar
-1 avocado
wraps (I’ve used both spinach and plain wraps with success)
salt & pepper to taste

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Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Measure out your cup of frozen peas and leave them on the counter to thaw.

Cut your sweet potato into cubes. Toss with the oil and spread evenly on a cookie sheet. Bake for about 25-30 minutes.
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While the sweet potatoes are baking, add your quinoa to a saucepan and top with 2 cups water. Stir in the curry powder. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer until the quinoa is cooked (you can tell it is cooked when it’s little tail pops out). Usually takes about 15 minutes.

When the quinoa is done, stir in the peas, cashews, maple syrup, rice vinegar and salt & pepper.
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Now assemble your wraps! First up, add a layer of sweet potato cubes:
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Now add the quinoa mixture:
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Top with avocado:
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Ready to eat!
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Summer Salads: Sweet potato & black bean dinner salad

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As soon as the temperature gets over 80 degrees, I develop a strong aversion for the stove. Last summer I really got into grilling. I don’t really know what I’m doing, so I check the grill with the kind of constant back-and-forth typically reserved for a new mom checking in on her one week old baby to make sure its still breathing. The huz tells me this is breaking rule #1 of being a grillmaster. So I won’t quit my day job just yet.

Anyway, I have become something of a grilled veggie salad connoisseur, and this is one of my standbys for a festive summery dinner.

Sweet potato & black bean summer salad, serves 2

Go get:
-Lettuce (romaine or spinach works well)
-Sweet potato, diced (note, they were all out of sweet potatoes at trader joe’s so I bought these packaged ones and they worked well)
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-2 ears of corn
-1 can black beans
-1 mango
-1/2 avocado
-olive oil
-1 t cumin
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Let’s do this:
Toss the sweet potato in about a tablespoon of olive oil and a teaspoon of cumin. Throw ’em on the grill using a grill pan (If you don’t have one, then you can roast them too. But grill pans are super fun, you should get one. Mine is from Williams Sonoma).
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Meanwhile, cut the kernels off the corn, rinse your black beans, and cut up mango and avocado. Find someone who likes empty corn cobs:
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When the sweet potatoes are nearly cooked through (about 8 mins), you can add in your black beans and corn:
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Grill these together for 3-5 minutes, tossing them occasionally. Top your lettuce with the mango, avocado, black beans, corn, and sweet potato and enjoy!
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This salad is great with a citrus vinaigrette. If you don’t have one, you can make lazy girl’s citrus vinaigrette:
1 T olive oil
1 T vinegar (I had an orange champagne vinegar from Trader Joe’s)
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 t honey
dash salt
dash pepper

Combine all of these in a jar and shake!
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Hey, that looks like a pee sample. It’s not, I swear.

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Sweet potato hummus

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Appetizers make me happy. Sometimes I eat “appetizers” for dinner (in larger-than-dinner-sized portions). Sometimes I make appetizers so that I can add them to everything else I eat all week.

Here’s one of them:

Sweet Potato Hummus, inspired by Power Foods

Go get:
2 large sweet potatoes
1 can chickpeas
Juice from one lemon
1/3 cup tahini
2 T olive oil
1 T ground cumin
2 garlic cloves
1/2 t salt
paprika for garnish
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Let’s do this:

Cut your sweet potatoes into about 1 inch chunks. Fill a large pot with about 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Add the sweet potatoes in a steamer basket and cook until tender. Took about 18 mins for me.

Process the garlic in your food processor so you don’t have to mince it. Add the sweet potatoes, chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, cumin, and salt. Process until smooth. Garnish with paprika.

Serve with pita chips or bell pepper (like I did!). Try not to eat it all in one sitting. But man, this would be good on a sandwich. And everything else I’m eating this week.

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Almost vegan sweet potato graham muffins

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Oh, Whole Foods iPad app, how I love thee. So easy, so smart.
I tried to vegan-ize these muffins but failed in the egg department (I ran out of flax seeds), so they have real eggs. But they are delish. Not too sweet, perfect with the latte you allowed yourself on a Sunday morning, even though you are trying to quit (“Oh coffee, I wish I knew how to quit you!”) .

Here’s what I used:

1 1/2 cups spelt flour
1 cup coarse graham cracker crumbs, divided (I used Back to Nature brand – loves!)
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 small sweet potatos, grated (WF says to peel these, but really, who has the time)
3 tablespoons Earth Balance, at room temperature
2/3 cup coconut milk yogurt
2 eggs
1/4 cup chopped pecans
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The slightly amended recipe:

Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a large bowl, combine flour, 3/4 cup crumbs, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add sweet potatoes and stir; set aside.

In a second large bowl, vigorously whisk together butter and yogurt. Add eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Add to flour and sweet potato mixture and fold together until  combined. Spoon batter evenly into muffin tins, sprinkle tops with pecans and remaining 1/4 cup crumbs and bake until cooked through, about 20 minutes.

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