Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sweet Potato, Kale, and Peanut Curry

Sometimes you just need a hug in a bowl, and that's exactly what today's recipe delivers. My family has been going through a rough time, and I brainstormed this curry one recent evening when we were all in need of a little cheering up. The result is a warming, colorful one-dish meal that pushes all the comfort food buttons - the accompanying fancy rum drinks didn't hurt, either - with the bonus factors of being 1. ridiculously healthy, and 2. even better as leftovers. Since there are a lot of flavors going on here and people in our house like a variety of hot sauces, I didn't add too much heat to the dish itself, but you can obviously adjust the spiciness to suit your tastes.

Sweet Potato, Kale, and Peanut Curry
~ 2 tbsp. coconut oil
~ 2 large sweet potatoes, cut in cubes
~ 1 large red onion, diced
~ 2 stalks celery, diced
~ 1 red bell pepper, large dice
~ 4 cloves garlic, minced
~ 1 tbsp. fresh grated ginger
~ 1 tsp. each: salt, cumin, curry powder, chili powder, thyme
~ ½ tsp. each: cinnamon, allspice, turmeric, cayenne (more to taste)
~ Dash nutmeg
~ A few healthy grinds of black pepper
~ 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes
~ 1 can black beans
~ 2 cans coconut milk (lite or hight-test, your choice)
~ ½ cup smooth peanut butter
~ 1 small head kale, cleaned and chopped
~ Juice of 1 lime (2-3 tbsp.)
~ Handful of chopped, toasted peanuts or cashews

~ Place a nonstick baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
~ Melt 1 tbsp. of the coconut oil and toss with the cubed sweet potatoes and a little salt and pepper. Spread the sweet potatoes out on the preheated baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes, until slightly browned but not mushy. Remove from the oven and set aside.
~ In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, melt the remaining 1 tbsp. of coconut oil and sauté the onion and celery over medium heat for 5 minutes.
~ Add the bell pepper, garlic, and ginger and cook another few minutes more before adding all the dry seasonings and stirring to coat.
~ Add the tomatoes and black beans (including their liquid), stir to combine, and continue cooking for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
~ Combine the coconut milk with the peanut butter and heat to almost boiling; whisk thoroughly until smooth and add to the pot along with the roasted sweet potato. Mix well and continue cooking another 10 minutes.
~ Stir in the chopped kale and cook for 5 minutes, until wilted but still bright green. Add the lime juice, taste for seasoning, and serve hot over brown rice topped with the chopped nuts and hot sauce(s) of choice.

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