Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

I LOVE sweet potatoes, in any form, mashed, cut up in little pieces for a breakfast hash, candied for  Thanksgiving, in a pie, fries, but my hands down favorite is roasted. There is truly nothing better than sweet potatoes put in an high oven and roasted to perfection. You can add a little butter and cinnamon but I like it just the way it is, it’s sweet enough that it doesn’t require much of anything.  In restaurants I have seen where they like to “kick up” a baked sweet potato with junk like marshmallows, and not that there is anything wrong with marshmallows but sweet on top of more sweet is just gross and a good way to ruin a perfectly good vegetable.  Not to mention the spike in calories.  Sweet potatoes already have a great amount of nutrients, why not compliment it with even MORE healthy goodness?  I got this great idea from a post on Pintrest. You split open a perfectly baked sweet potato and stuff it with this lime cilantro infused black bean and corn mixture.  The idea is genius, delicious AND couldn’t be easier!   This is a great side dish or main dish.  Try it tonight..seriously DO IT!

Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

4 Sweet potatoes

1 can of black beans, drained

1 can of corn or frozen corn, cooked

1 orange or yellow (or red or green) bell pepper, chopped

1 small or 1/2 of a big red onion, chopped

3-4 limes, juiced

1/4 cup of cilantro

2 tbs honey

a few dashes of hot sauce

3 TBS of olive oil

Course salt and pepper to taste

1. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.  Put potatoes on sheet and roast in oven for 30-40 minutes

2. Meanwhile make your stuffing.  In a bowl mix the onion, pepper, corn,  and beans.  In  separate bowl whisk together the lime juice, honey, hot sauce, oil and salt and pepper.  Add dressing to the bean mixture.  Keep refrigerated until potatoes are done.

3.   Take potatoes out when they are soft and tender throughout.  (you can prick with a fork to test)

4. Using a pairing knife split open lengthwise and cut 3 quarters of the way down.  Making enough room for the stuffing.  Add  spoonful’s of the bean mixture to each potato.  You can add more lime juice to the top or more hot sauce (ME) or even a little feta cheese if you have it!   Its so incredibly refreshing and so good! Enjoy!! (Tip- make extra stuffing and add it to fish, chicken or beef for a great topping!)

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Recipe adapted from: HERE

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Lentil Patties

My 21 day cleanse is officially over and I feel great and lost a few pounds (hooray!) the best part of this process was trying new foods and new ways of cooking that I’m not normally use to.  I’m a sucker for two things; pizza and burgers.  And I will never give that stuff up, it’s really all about moderation.  I was never into the veggie burger thing, why would I have a veggie burger instead of a juicy, greasy, succulent all beef burger?!  But this cleanse was all about trying new things and being open minded.  I was reading through the February edition of Martha Stewart Living magazine and saw these really good looking lentil patties made with green lentils. She accompanied the patty with capers, yogurt and Bibb lettuce. I figured I would try the recipe (with my own interpretation of course) and it turned out really great! I added more vegetables in the mix and instead of yogurt I accompanied mine with fresh made salsa on a bed of romaine hearts. It was a delicious, fresh and filling meal.

No, it will never replace that juicy, fatty, luscious all meat burger on a bun but its great alternative for a healthful meal! Green lentils are best here, they are firmer and hold the whole thing together really well. I tried it last week with red lentils and it was hard to keep together and way more mushy. I’m going to try next time with a mix of green lentils and black beans..yum!

Lentil Patties

Special equipment note: I used a food processor to grind the ingredients if you don’t have one make sure all vegetables are chopped finely and mash lentils with a masher or fork)

1/2 cup Green Lentils
1 Red onion chopped (if its a big one use half)
2 Eggs (lightly beaten)
1 Cup Almond flour (for binding, feel free to use breadcrumbs or panko)
1/2 of a green or red pepper, finely chopped
6-8 White button mushroom
2 TBS of chopped parsley
1 TBS smoked paprika
1 teaspoon of chili powder
Course salt and fresh black pepper

Accompaniments
Salsa
Romaine lettuce
Sliced red onion
Chopped parsley
Other options: fried egg, plain yogurt mixed with cayenne pepper, hot sauce, any type of cheese, sautéed vegetables just to name a few!

1. Bring 3 cups of water to a boil and add lentils. Season with salt and continue on medium heat for about 20 minutes until lentils are tender. When they are done drain them and let cool in a bowl.
2. Combine lentils, mushrooms, onion, peppers, parsley, paprika, chili powder, almond flour, eggs and salt and pepper in a bowl.
3. Take half the mixture and pulse in a food processors (or mash) until smooth. Add back to the other half and mix together until well combined.
4. Use a small ice cream scoop and form patties. (tip- spray your hands with cooking spray when forming the patties, it wont stick to your hands)
5. Heat a skillet with oil (olive, veg, coconut etc.) on medium heat. Cook in batches until crisps on both sides, about 3 minutes each side. Let cool on a baking sheet.
6. Use one romaine heart per patty. Lay patty on top of lettuce (you can dress your lettuce with fresh lemon juice) then add your salsa on top of patty or whatever toppings you decide to use. Enjoy!

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