I was searching for a way to spice up eating a sweet potato, a healthy food item that I don’t seem to think about til Thanksgiving approaches, and then I end up reminding myself, “I should be eating these more often”. I really love sweet potatoes, and they are so good for you. I found this in my often referenced magazine subscription “Whole Living“.
Remember, bright colors in vegetables and fruits are an indication that they will have good health benefits. With their dark-amber skin and bright-orange filling, sweet potatoes we expect that of sweet potatoes, as well. Turns out, they are a great source of beta-carotene, Vitamin A, fiber, and vitamins B6 and C. Sweet potatoes can be used in place of white potatoes, soups, stews, side dishes, you name it – with more positive health benefits!
I made some changes to the original which used ricotta cheese. I find ricotta too bland and boring, so I replaced that with a yogurt and goat cheese mixture.
Sweet Potato with Kale – Ingredients
Prep Time 15 minutes, Total Time 1 hour, Serves 4
- 4 medium sweet potatoes (8 to 10 ounces each), pricked all over with a fork
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped finely
- 1 bunch kale (about 1 1/4 pounds), thick stems removed, leaves torn into large pieces and washed with water left clinging
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 1 to 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, (I actually used a Lite Sun-dried Tomato Vinaigrette dressing instead)
- 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, if desired
- 2/3 cup non-fat plain Greek Yogurt (I prefer Chobani)
- 1/3 cup Goat Cheese
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place potatoes on a rimmed baking sheet and rub with 1 tablespoon oil. Bake until easily pierced with the tip of a paring knife, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Pull goat cheese from the refrigerator to allow it to soften.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-high. Add garlic; cook until golden, stirring 1 to 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer garlic to a paper towel to drain. Do not overcook, as garlic loses its health benefits the more it is cooked.
- Add as much kale as will fit in the skillet; season with salt and pepper. Continue to add kale as the leaves cook down. Cook, tossing frequently until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in vinegar and red-pepper flakes.
- Combine the Greek Yogurt and Goat cheese in a bowl and blend until smooth.
- Open each potato; add salt and pepper. Top with the yogurt-goat cheese mixture, kale, and garlic.
I was pleased to find out that I really enjoyed this for dinner. Being vegetarian, I ate it as my main course, but it would absolutely serve nicely as a healthy side dish. The flavors are sweet, salty and spicy, with a garlic kick – a nice variety and combination of flavors.
Health Benefits of Kale: Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables around. Again, its deep green color works as a good indicator. It is high in Vitamins K, A, and C, and high in fiber (for a healthy digestive tract). It has a variety of antioxidants contributing to risk-lowering benefits for cancer. One cup of Kale provides more Vitamin K than any other healthy vegetable and Vitamin K is a key nutrient for helping regulate our body’s inflammatory process. Eating Kale on a regular basis (1 1/2 cups 2-3 times a week) should be helpful in lowering your risk of chronic inflammation and related health problems. For more detailed nutritional information see “The World’s Healthiest Foods.”
I have published a complete page on the benefits of eating garlic here: Health Benefits of Garlic.
Hope you try, and enjoy, this easy, healthy recipe!