January 9, 2013

A loaded baked potato with a sweet and savory side

By ELIZABETH KARMEL, The Associated Press

Much as I love mashed white potatoes, my favorite "potato" is the sweet variety.

click image to enlarge

The loaded sweet potato with roasted garlic will easily stand alone as a meatless meal, but it also would pair well with leftover or rotisserie chicken.

The Associated Press

I've been cooking and eating sweet potatoes as long as I can remember. And when I found out that they were loaded with vitamins and other good-for-you stuff like fiber, I immediately thought... Here's a great excuse to eat sweet potato pie!

Kidding aside, sweet potatoes are just as good if not better than traditional baking potatoes in savory applications. My favorite one-bowl meal in winter is a loaded baked potato. And I often make it with sweet potatoes.

Around 5 p.m., I throw the potatoes in a 350 F oven. I find that a lower oven temperature keeps the skin from falling apart, allowing you to split the potato in half and load it up! However, it does take twice as long for the potatoes to cook.

This year, I have been topping my potato with sauteed kale, which not only looks stunning -- all that orange and green -- but also is a perfect complement to the sweet "meaty" potato.

But that's not all. I also roast garlic and make it into a paste to flavor the potato, folding in just a touch of butter and a pinch of sage. I scoop out half of the potato, mix it all together, add half the cheese and put it back into the shells like you would a twice-baked potato. At this point, the recipe can be made in advance and re-heated another day.

Just before serving, you sprinkle on more cheese, add a healthy spoonful of the sauteed kale and, if you like, top with toasted pumpkin seeds for a welcome crunch. If you don't like kale, you can saute spinach instead. And while I have specified fontina and Gruyere for the cheeses, Parmesan, cheddar and mozzarella are great, too.

I generally make this loaded potato a "meatless meal," but you could easily add leftover or rotisserie chicken.

LOADED SWEET POTATOES WITH ROASTED GARLIC

If you want to get a jump on things, the garlic can be roasted and mixed with the butter and salt up to 2 days in advance. Just refrigerate until needed.

Start to finish: 1½ hours (45 minutes active)

Servings: 8

3 heads garlic

Olive oil

Kosher salt

4 large sweet potatoes

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

Pinch dried sage

1 large shallot, chopped

1 bunch (about 5 ounces) baby or chopped Tuscan kale

½ cup grated fontina cheese

Ground black pepper, to taste

½ to 1 cup shredded white cheddar, Gruyere or mozzarella cheese

3 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds (optional)

Roasted chicken (optional)

Heat the oven to 400.

Remove the outer layer of papery skin from the heads of garlic. Slice off ¼ inch from the narrow end of each. Place each head of garlic, cut side up, on a square of heavy-duty foil. Drizzle each with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt. Wrap the foil loosely up and over the garlic heads, then roast for 1 hour, or until golden-brown and soft. Remove and let cool.

Meanwhile, prick the sweet potatoes with a fork, then rub them with oil. Add them to the oven and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until tender.

Once the garlic has cooled enough to handle, remove the cloves from their skins. The most efficient way to do this is to squeeze the whole head from the bottom. In a small food processor, combine the garlic, butter, sage and a pinch of salt, then pulse until chopped and combined. Set aside.

About 15 minutes before the potatoes have finished, in a medium saute pan over medium-high, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the shallot and saute until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the kale, and saute for a few minutes, stirring constantly, until tender. Set aside.

(Continued on page 2)

Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form

Send question/comment to the editors




Further Discussion

Here at PressHerald.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)




 

Blogs

The Golden Dish - Yesterday
Lamb stew for spring

More PPH Blogs