Hellooooo, new dinner recipe! I feel like all I’ve been posting lately are either dessert recipes or things from muffin tins, so I’m breaking that pattern this week. I haven’t expressed my obsession with sweet potatoes enough through my blog posts, but we have a serious love affair. Fries, chips, tots, desserts, dinner rolls, caramelized, baked, stuffed — you name it, I can do it with a sweet potato. The funny part is that I absolutely despised these things as a child, and had I not started worrying about complex and low-GI carbohydrates last year, I probably still wouldn’t be familiar with the glory of the sweet potato. If you think you don’t like them, get over it, buy a big one from the grocery store, and try this recipe.
I came up with this on a whim earlier this week when I was looking for a super-simple dinner recipe. I was exhausted on Monday night, and NO part of me wanted to cook. But, since take-out isn’t really my style anymore, I found a way to make something work and now have a new favorite recipe. (Love when that happens.) The good news: you can make this in about 15 minutes, and you don’t need to use your oven. The bad news: well, there is none. My only side for this dish was about a cup of roasted Brussels sprouts and I was full.
Savory Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
Cook time: 15 minutes
- 1 small sweet potato (or half of 1 large) — mine was around 200g
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 3/4 cup raw spinach leaves
- 1 tbsp minced shallot
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1oz. goat cheese
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 links Bilinski’s chicken sausage (available at most HEBs — I used Mild Italian), quartered and sliced
- Scrub your sweet po’. Don’t peel it.
- Using a fork, poke holes all over the potato. Wrap it in a wet paper towel and microwave for 7-8 minutes on 80% power (or use your microwave’s Potato setting)
- While your potato cooks, heat olive oil, spinach, shallot, and garlic in a skillet over medium heat until the spinach is wilted and your garlic starts to brown/become fragrant
- Add your sausage, red pepper, salt, pepper, and mix everything together
- Take your potato out of the microwave and slice it down the middle (as you would with a regular old baked potato)
- Leaving the outer skin as intact as you can, scoop out the insides and drop it into a bowl. Mash it all together with your sausage/spinach mixture and the goat cheese until thoroughly mixed
- Scoop the mixture back into your sweet potato skin and engulf
The Personal Stuff (stop reading if you ain’t interested)
If my last few posts haven’t alluded to this enough, I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed for the past month (hence the easy/lazy dinner recipe above). It’s taken a toll on my productivity, my sanity, and my stress level. The good news: I’m finally getting out of that funk, and it feels fabulous.
One thing about getting healthier that doesn’t show on the outside is the mental clarity that comes from it. You realize a slew of different things about yourself and the way that your mind works when you’re not spending your brain’s energy on worrying about things like your weight, why you feel so crappy, or not fitting into a pair of old pants. It’s almost like a weird self-enlightenment thing. (Not “enlightenment” in the sense that I think I know everything — because I totally don’t — but more in the sense that I’ve learned a lot about the way that I comprehend, analyze, and work through different situations.)
Maybe it’s just me, but I firmly believe in the whole mind/body connection. Now that my body is functioning more efficiently and healthily, it seems like my brain is following suit. Along with that, I’ve found that I’m more able to pull myself out of stressful situations and think about them from an “outsider” view, which helps me figure out how to manage without being too emotionally attached to whatever is going on. This totally applies to life at home, work, cooking for other people on the weekends, and the decision-making process overall. I used to HATE making decisions because I’d get so wrapped up in the “what if’s.” This week, I made a pretty big decision without any of that mess. I analyzed, thought about what I want for my future, and went with it. No regrets, either, because I’m happy with myself and trust that I can make good choices for me. I know where I want to be, what I want to do, and I’m not going to let things get in the way of achieving my goals.
I know this probably sounds weird and obscure, but I don’t think people talk about what happens on the inside when it comes to losing weight or getting more in touch with your health and wellness as much as we should. We’re so caught up in a number on the scale or how tiny someone looks compared to 6 months ago — I’m guilty of it, too — but the most rewarding part is really not visible. I’ll leave you guys with this for some “weekend wisdom:” health is just as much about how your brain and emotions are functioning as it is about your physical appearance. The latter is WAY more fulfilling than fitting into any size of pants or hitting your “goal weight.” :o) Happy Friday!