As most of you know, I am participating in NaBloPoMo, the daily posting challenger from Blogher. There is something about that commitment, to write about food and recipes daily, that has inspired me to think outside my box. If I’m going to include myself in the same league as some of the food bloggers that I follow, I have a standard to live up to. But, this is Kat’s Easy Kitchen. So, standards or not, I still want to cook and write about dishes I’m actually eating on a daily basis.
Another commitment I previously made to myself was to eat more seasonal produce. I’ve definitely been influenced by the blogs I subscribe to and the cooks I follow. Reading about their food experiences has demystified some ingredients, armed me with every day recipes to try and given me the inspiration to experiment. Earlier this week, with no list prepared, I breezed through the produce department of my local farmers market and purchased “autumn” produce; eggplant, kale, Swiss chard, butternut squash, and acorn squash.
As part of my weekend marathon soup making session (using the broth I made during the week), I had intended to cook a kale and white bean soup. I really wanted to use the kale but after the third batch of soup I couldn’t bring myself to make one more. I needed something a bit more substantial. Knowing I had andouille sausage left over from the gumbo I made, I did a few Google searches until I stumbled upon this recipe. Lo and behold, I had every ingredient I needed. The combination of the sweet potato, tart cider and spicy sausage looked like exactly what I wanted.
My apologies in advance to the originator of the recipe, Cara Lyons, who is a Featured Contributor to Clean Eating Magazine. The primary change I made to this recipe was to start with a little bacon grease (oops, not so clean) instead of olive oil. In my defense, the frying pan already had the remnants of the bacon I fried up earlier for soup number one. It seemed such a shame to waste it.
This meal cooked up really quick and was heavenly. It was so good, in fact, that I ate both servings. Gulp! Its not as bad as it seems, I hadn’t eaten much all day and I was starving. If you try this recipe, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
- 1/2 lb diced, peeled sweet potatoes (approx 1 large)
- 1 medium-sized bunch of kale
- 2 links Andouille chicken sausage, such as Trader Joe’s brand
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons minced shallot
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons whole grain dijon mustard (I used spicy brown mustard)
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- pinch of Cajun seasoning (I used Old Bay dry seasoning)
- salt, to taste
- Place the sweet potatoes in a large, microwave-safe bowl with a splash of water. Cover and begin microwaving for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, chop the kale to yield a half pound. Wash it, then add to the sweet potatoes in the microwave a few minutes into the cooking time.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Slice the chicken sausage thinly and add to the skillet, cooking until browned on both sides. When the potatoes and kale are finished steaming and the sausage is browned, add the sausage to the bowl with the potatoes and kale. Set aside.
- Add the olive oil to the skillet, and cook the shallots and garlic for one or two minutes. Add the cider vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, and Cajun seasoning. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Add the potatoes, kale, and sausage to the skillet and turn to coat and heat through. Season to taste with salt.
Kat’s tip: I always associate raw kale with garnish on a buffet line. Kale is in the same family as broccoli and cabbage and is uber high in nutrients. To get the most value from kale, its best to steam it for 5 minutes. Cara is a genius!
Kat’s second tip: I had a revelation and used my Pampered Chef garlic mincer on the shallot too. It worked like charm!
Serves two (unless you’re really hungry like I was).
Calories: 387.2 Total Fat: 14.6 g Cholesterol: 75.0 mg Sodium: 1,146.8 mg Total Carbs: 39.6 g Dietary Fiber: 6.7 g Protein: 25.7 g
Source: http://www.carascravings.com/2010/03/warm-sweet-potato-kale-and-andouille.html. You just gotta love a girl who swoons over food 🙂