Lately, I’ve been experimenting with three ingredients and my cast iron pan. I like that I can stick the pan under the broiler and bake some eggs, after I’ve partially cooked the other ingredients on the stove top. Cast iron is really great for even heat and works well even on my glass top, too. Trying the same dish over and over in different ways should give you perfection sooner or later, but I’m always thinking what if I did this, or this, or this. Don’t be afraid to experiment.
This combination of sweet potatoes, greens and fresh eggs has become family favorite. These aren’t the only ingredients I’m using, because often I add luna burgers broken up and I also use onions, shallots or leeks. Fresh herbs are good to sprinkle over top, and a little bit of chevre and swiss ( two of the lowest sodium cheeses my husband can eat). The greens are whatever I have on hand, sometimes spinach or chard, but this week tatsoi was in the market bag. Tatsoi is similar in look to bok choy, but a little milder in taste. Reading about tatsoi, it seems to be pretty winter hardy and may be something to grow in my garden next year.
Sweet potatoes are the base. They are grated, and the water squeezed out in order to form a bottom crust . If you’d like softer potatoes, squeeze only some of the water or none depending on how crusty you want it. I added ginger and rosemary to the potatoes. If you use salt, add it to each layer; the potato layer, the greens layer and the egg layer. We left it out because of my husband’s diet but the herbs give the dish a really nice flavor.
I’ve also added winter squash to the greens layer before. My mother in law thought it was really pretty with the light orange in with the bright greens. The greens layer is on top of the sweet potato base, but is started in another pan first. Then using a finger or spoon make a well in the greens to add the eggs. If you don’t make the well, your eggs slide out of place and they might anyway as I found out. Try as I might the eggs never stay perfectly placed. Move something around and they just slide another way.
- 1 large sweet potato or 2 medium.
- ¼ cup onion divided
- 1 knob of ginger
- handful of rosemary minced
- olive or canola oil
- 2 bunches tatsoi
- 6 large eggs
- 2 ounces chevre
- 1 ounce of swiss cheese grated
- fresh thyme
- Grate sweet potato(es), onion and ginger together.
- Place in a dish towel and squeeze liquid out.
- Add two tablespoons of whole wheat flour and minced rosemary and mix ingredients together.
- Heat Cast Iron or other pan and add 4 tbs oil.
- When the oil is hot sprinkle the sweet potato mixture all around until it covers the bottom in a layer. (and leave it alone).
- In a separate smaller pan - non stick, heat up 1 tbs of oil.
- Large dice onions, and the stems of the tatsoi.
- Separately chop the tatsoi leaves.
- Saute the onions and stems until they start to turn translucent.
- Add the tatsoi leaves to the pan and let cook down - the leaves will wilt down like most greens.
- You may need to add a little oil to the sweet potatoes as they cook.
- When the potatoes seem like they've formed a crust on the bottom, using a plate, flip the potatoes over and slide it back into the pan on the other side.
- Pile the greens mixture on top of the sweet potatoes and using your fingers, or a spoon make little wells for eggs.
- Dollop chevre around the pan.
- Crack eggs and place them with the yolk in the center of the wells.
- With the oven on low broil, place the cast iron pan into the oven.
- The yolks will start to firm and the translucent whiltes will become opaque, you'll have to watch to make sure that you get it out of the oven on time.
- Sprinkle the top with grated swiss cheese and herbs (thyme, parsley, etc.)
I love sweet potatoes and kale, such a great healthy combination. How are your winter stores holding up? The sweet potatoes were in our basement cold storage and holding up really well. These were potatoes we grew from slips in our garden, so I’m thrilled to have them in such good shape in February.
We have been picking up a market bag from a grocer. Each week is a surprise, but usually contains greens, fruit (apples, pears, oranges) some sort of grain, and usually bread and veggies. Most of it is organic, and as much as possible local – not easy to do this time of year. Last week we received some dinosaur kale. Lovely bright and green dinosaur kale.
Recently I saw an episode of The Chew where Michael Symon attempted a 5 in 5 – which he failed to complete on time, but it had the ingredients I love together – sweet potatoes and swiss chard. I took his idea of grilling the sweet potatoes and sauteeing the chard, but substituted kale. Instead of a vinaigrette, I squeezed an orange over top and grated orange zest over top. While the sweet potato was grilling I sprinkled cinnamon over top. Toasting crimini mushrooms and pine nuts to sprinkle over top for the finish. My son and I enjoyed this meal a lot, and it was very filling.
- 2 large or 3 medium sweet potatoes sliced into planks
- 1 shallot sliced
- bunch of dinosaur kale
- 1 orange (zest and juice)
- ⅛ cup pine nuts
- ½ cup crimini mushrooms chopped
- Olive oil
- Lay sweet potato planks on oiled grill pan and sprinkle with cinnamon.
- In a saute pan, melt 2 tbs butter and toast mushrooms and pine nuts.
- Take the mushrooms and pine nuts out of the pan and place on a dish.
- Add olive oil to the saute pan.
- Saute shallots until soft.
- Slice the dinosaur kale across the width and add to the shallots.
- Flip the sweet potato planks when one side is soft and has grill marks.
- Grate orange zest and squeeze orange juice over top of the dinosaur kale.