Thanks, but I’ll pass on the pork and sauerkraut today

With an intention to stop recipe hoarding in 2018, the process of reviewing piles of electronic and hard copies is underway. Using my new handy dandy MealBoard app, I downloaded several recipes using sweet potatoes and butternut, acorn and spaghetti squash that were previously in my “magazine pile.” These winter vegetables are amply available because I grew sweet potatoes in my garden, and they have a shelf life of several months. It’s actually better to let sweet potatoes sit for a while after harvest because they need time to cure which enhances the flavor. And one of my favorite local grocery stores recently had a sale on imported organic vegetables (15-cent acorn squash, 65-cent spaghetti squash, 75-cent butternut squash), so I grabbed a few of each and canned them over the weekend. I saved a few cubed sweet potatoes and butternut squash to cook fresh.

To take advantage of my “winter” vegetable bounty, I made a sweet potato and black bean bowl for lunch. By substituting butter and eliminating the feta cheese crumbles, this recipe could easily be modified for non-dairy consumers. It was easy to make and very satisfying. Let me know if you decide to try it yourself.

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Bowl

~ 1 lb. of peeled and cubed sweet potato (or butternut squash or neck pumpkin)

1 small onion (yellow or white)

large clove of garlic

~16 oz. of black beans, cooked, drained and rinsed

cayenne pepper or canned hot peppers to taste

lime juice, no more than a tablespoon or two (or juice of one fresh lime)

maple syrup or agave nectar, no more than a tablespoon or two

1/4 cup raw or toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds), optional

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese, optional

Heat butter (or oil of choice) in a pan over medium heat. Add a little bit of water and squash or sweet potato chunks. Cover and cook up to ten minutes or until chunks start to soften but still remain firm. In a separate pan, cook minced onion and garlic until pieces start to brown. Add black beans and hot pepper to taste. (I have hot peppers canned in olive oil and vinegar that I grew in my garden. I add one or two to any dish calling for a little heat. I also buy dry organic black beans from a local health food grocery store and can them myself without adding any salt. It makes meal preparation a lot easier, and I know what’s in my food). Once the beans and spices are heated, transfer them to the pan with the potato or squash. Add the lime juice and maple syrup or agave nectar. Mix well, and serve immediately with toppings of your choice.

©, January 1, 2018



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