Sweet Potato Stuffed with Beans or Chicken

These are a favourite family meal in our house. Use Sweet Potatoes when they are in season and cheap. Try either the bean or chicken filling or amend the recipe to include your favourite ingredients. Leftovers are perfect for lunchboxes.
Serves = 4

Ingredients – Beans

2 large sweet potatoes (about 350g each)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon cayenne or chilli pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 red onion, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 (440 g) can black beans, rinsed, drained
3/4 cup tomato juice or 1/2 tin canned tomatoes
1 ripe avocado
3 tablespoons chopped coriander (optional)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 cups baby spinach (about 60 g)
Light sour cream to serve (optional)

Method

Preheat oven to 200°C. Cut potatoes in half lengthwise. Toss with 1 Tbsp. oil and place cut side up on a baking sheet. Roast until fork-tender (about 25 mins).
Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 Tbsp. oil in a frypan. Add onion and half of garlic and cook, stirring, until onion softens. Add beans, juice (or canned tomatoes), cayenne and cumin and cook until liquid is reduced and beans soften (about 10 mins).
Meanwhile, mash avocado and remaining garlic in a medium bowl with a fork until smooth. Stir in 2 Tbsp. coriander and 1 Tbsp. lime juice.
Use a sharp spoon to scoop out all but a centimeter of potato flesh, stir the scooped flesh into the bean mix, mashing it roughly as you stir.
Add spinach and remaining 1 Tbsp. lime juice to bean mixture. Continue to cook until spinach wilts (about 30 seconds).
Spoon bean mixture into potato halves, then top evenly with 2 Tbsp. avocado mixture, and remaining 1 Tbsp. coriander. Serve with light sour cream, if using, and remaining avocado dip alongside.

Note: Potatoes and beans can be made 3 days ahead; store separately, cover, and chill. Reheat potatoes in oven and beans in pan before serving.

Alternative Filling

Sweet Potato stuffed with Chicken

Ingredients – Chicken

4 small sweet potatoes (orange, white and/or purple), washed
100g barbecued/ cooked chicken, skin removed, shredded
80g thinly sliced lean ham
1 bunch broccolini, or head of broccoli, trimmed, chopped
2 green shallots, thinly sliced
100g grated reduced fat cheddar cheese
mixed salad leaves, to serve (optional)

Method

Cook sweet potatoes in over as above.
Meanwhile, combine the chicken, ham, broccolini and shallot in a large bowl. Set aside.
Reduce the oven temperature to 200°C/180°C fan forced. Scoop the soft flesh from the sweet potatoes, leaving a 5mm-thick shell. Add the sweet potato flesh to the chicken mixture, along with half the cheddar. Stir to combine. Spoon the chicken filling into the sweet potato shells, piling it high. Scatter over the remaining cheddar. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden and the cheese is melted. Serve with mixed salad leaves, if you like.

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