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ROLLING OUT SWEET POTATO DELICACIES

LifestyleROLLING OUT SWEET POTATO DELICACIES

Potato is one such inviting word upon hearing which most of us feel tempted to grab into but not to forget the carb into it as well. The need of the hour today is to somewhere modify a little and to twist and turn slightly towards a better outcome on our plates and also to tickle the palate with something interesting and worthy.

To me it has always been one of the top most preferred ingredient in my kitchen which has not only assisted in many ways from basic recipes, to fillers in some dishes, to add texture and volume, to help thicken up gravies etc as well.

From a very young age we all have indulged in this simple and satisfying commodity from enjoying our all-time favourite French Fries, Finger Chips to our Desi hit Vada Pao, to the breakfast special hot and appetizing Aloo Parathas with a bowl of Curd and Papad. I know while reading this most of us are getting those cravings of going for a quick potato bite and relish ourselves with something delectable and enjoy a quick filler in between those meals. But guess what, today we have an even more interesting ingredient to speak about and that’s Sweet Potato- also called Shakarkhandi in India.

We do agree that not many of us have really tried too many varieties with sweet potatoes so far, while some of us have easily adapted to it but most of us need a little practical ideas and easy tips at times to make that shift from the regular to the not so regular cooking styles in our kitchens, hence this write up for all you foodies, to create that bit of open minded approach and shift from potato to sweet potato once in a while for a change and loads of healthy offerings too.

Top 10 Health Benefits of Sweet Potato:

  1. Sweet Potatoes help prevent Vitamin-A deficiency.
  2. They have been considered fairly good to be eaten in moderation while managing diabetes.
  3. Good for Managing stress, helps improve the shine and gloss on hair and our skin as well.
  4. A great ingredient to be eaten for good eye care and vision, it is also one of the popular memory enhancing foods.
  5. sweet potatoes have a good offering in terms of Vitamin Besides it also gives us considerable amounts of iron and potassium.
  6. It has also been believed that sweet potato consumption helps minimise sugar absorption.
  7. A few studies also suggest that sweet potatoes help in issues related to arthritis too.
  8. They are considered to be healthier alternatives to the regular potatoes in many ways.
  9. They offer much lesser calories as compared to having our regular potatoes, they are also considered anti-bacterial, anti –inflammatory.
  10. Sweet potatoes are packed with anti-oxidants, vitamins, essential minerals.

10 Ways on how to Adapt to Sweet Potatoes in

Cooking & Baking:

  1. Sweet potatoes are a staple food of many parts of the world and they are slightly naturally sweet, starchy and a perfect treat to have in our recipes. Try adding them into your regular Tikkis, Cutlets, Koftas and Quick Bite Recipes from a Sesame Toast to the Hara Bhara Kababs and the like.
  2. I enjoyed using sweet potatoes in soups with mix vegetable options with carrots, celery, beans, peas, capsicums and even spinach. It kind of blends itself so well into soups and with its natural starch content it also offered a decent texture and mouthfeel to the soup variants. Try a sweet potato and pea soup, carrot – mint and sweet potato soup – serve it chilled like shots, Bottlegourd and sweet potato creamy textured soup a great one for a warm summer afternoon!
  3. Indian gravies and curries too accept the indigenous composition of sweet potatoes and they naturally add a creamy texture to many variations by which the content of cashew paste, fresh cream, charmagaz also can be reduced considerably along with calories as well.
  4. Sweet Potato Fries, can do it baked as well, a light dusting of sea salt, some fresh herbs, a drizzle of coconut oil or even olive oil works fine, add a little roasted crushed cumin powder for an added taste, not to forget a splash of lime juice and coriander leaves to garnish. They are also considered to be a great choice for fasting foods in the Indian sub-continent since they help us manage the hunger pangs.
  5. Sweet Potato Frankie, a popular fast food concept can be re-devised into a health wrap and roll concept. Use chapattis made with a combination of flours like soy with whole-wheat, millets and oat meal with multi-grain flour with a touch of kasuri methi in the dough, roll them cook them both sides, apply a little sauce or spread of your choice I liked peanut butter here with some shredded cabbage, a nice patty of boiled mashed mildly spiced sweet potato with carrots and peas, shredded onions, chaat masala and wrap-ready to go!
  6. Talking about continental variations, a sweet potato mash with crushed pepper, dash of mixed herbs, a little milk to add to the texture is just great to go with a main course. A nice stir fry recipe with sweet potato fingers along with carrot sticks, snow peas, red and yellow capsicums with a little stir fry sauce is a good choice to offer for a side dish. Asian style stir fried sweet potatoes with star anise and soy sauce goes well too as a Chinese side dish, crispy wafers/chips made from sweet potato help garnish salads and dips as well. Try using it as a base as well to replace bread for a pizza concept or mini canapes. Sweet potato starch is also available easily to use for binding in our recipes, replace Maida, cornflour and bread.
  7. Baked Sweet Potato Cups, stuffed with some cooked soy keema, the pulp itself along with some roasted crushed peanuts, some white sauce and parsley, a pinch of all spice powder, top it with a little cheese, quickly brown it, serve hot with garlic bread.
  8. Try doing a Casserole concept with Sweet Potatoes, Chicken or Meat of your choice, or just some fresh garden veggies like zucchini, broccoli, baby carrots, red capsicums, mushrooms etc and cook them in a mild gravy or tomato sauce and serve it with brown rice.
  9. Sweet Potato Samosas, Baked Kachories, Parathas, Kulchas, fillings for Sandwiches and Dosas, Dips and Spreads for Sandwiches works wonders. Try a sandwich spread with boiled mashed sweet potato with a little salt, pepper chopped parsley, peanut butter and little tomato ketchup, mix well apply on bread and place your fillings and relish!

1O. Baked Sweet Potato Pies, Fillings for Veg Puffs, add them boiled and mashed into a Bread dough as well with a little Pumpkin seeds or Sunflower seeds, add them to a Brownie mix as well to add to the goey texture upon baking. A vegan sweet potato pie or pudding also is a good option. For some Indian twist I used sweet potatoes in a Halwa, Sheera, Shahi Tukda, double ka meetha, barfi, and in stuffed Sweet Potato Gulab Jamuns as well with Chocolate Gulkhand Rabdi.

Here are a few recipes with sweet potato for all our readers to try out:

Recipe-1] Shakarkhandi Ka Desi Salad

Ingredients.

For the Body of the Salad:

Sweet potato/Shakarkhandi- 300 gms, peeled, cut into cubes & boiled until just cooked or even can be baked or roasted.

Boiled sweet corn- 1/2cup

Capsicum-1/2 no, green cut into small cubes.

Tomatoes-1 small cut into cubes

Cucumber-1/2 no.peeled and cut into cubes

Onions/shallots-  2 to 3 tbsp., cut into small cubes.

Green chilies- 1-2 nos. chopped

Coriander leaves- 2-3 tbsp. chopped

Mint leaves- 8 to 10 no. for garnish

Roasted crushed peanuts- 2 to 3 tbsp.

For the Dressing of the Desi Salad:

Olive oil- 2 -3 tbsp.

Mustard paste-1 tsp

Chat masala-1/2 tsp& salt to taste

Roasted crushed cumin powder- ½ tsp

Mayonnaise or hung curd-1/2 cup

Tomato ketchup-2 tsp

Chili sauce-1 tsp

For the Base of the Salad:

Assorted lettuce/salad leaves/purple cabbage- 1 cup

Method:

  1. Prepare all the ingredients for the salad.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine together the ingredients for the dressing and stir well.
  3. Add in the ingredients for the body of the salad from boiled sweet potato cubes to everything else and give it a quick toss.
  4. Arrange the base of the salad on a plate and top with the fresh salad, sprinkle the peanuts, fresh herbs,coriander,mint etc and serve it immediately.

Chefs Variations:

  • Try the same salad concept with a twist of Indo-Chinese fusion combine tamarind chutney with little schezuan chutney and toss the sweet potato in combination with non-veg like roast/grilled sliced chicken, tandoori chicken tikka, or sliced mutton seekh kababs, tava fry prawns!
  • To add some more fillers, choose to add some boiled healthy options like whole-wheat pasta, vermicelli, grilled or pan fried egg plant cubes, a little pesto mayo or hung curd for the dressing.

Recipe-2] Pan Baked Spiced Soy & Sweet Potatoes.

Ingredients

Sweet potatoes- 350gms.peeled, cut into small cubes.

Soy keema/granules- 100 gms. Soaked in warm water for 10 mins.

Oil- 2 tsp

Butter-1 tsp

Garlic- 1tsp.chopped

Onions- 1 small. Chopped

Tomato puree- ½ cup

Peanut butter- 2 tbsp.

Warm water- 1 cup for cooking

Salt to taste

Black pepper powder-1/4 tsp

Garam masala powder- ½ tsp

Chili flakes and mixed herbs to taste

Grated paneer/ crumbled tofu- ½ cup

Cheese- ¼ cup grated

Chopped parsley/cilantro- 2 tsp

Method:

  1. Prepare all the ingredients for the recipe.
  2. Heat oil and butter in a pan, add in the garlic, onions and saute for 15 seconds.
  3. Add in the soy and sweet potatoes and saute, add all spices, tomato puree, little water along with peanut butter and allow the mixture to cook on a low flame for 8 to 10 mins.
  4. Add paneer/tofu and mix lightly, top with little grated cheese and place the pan in a pre-heated oven at 150 degrees Celsius for 8 to 10 mins, serve hot with herbed garlic toasties.

Chefs Variations:

  • Try the same recipe with sweet potatoes in combination with boiled diced eggs, ham, salami or chicken sausages with little white sauce and cheese for a change
  • For a more desi option, I prefer adding soy chunks with sliced mushrooms and sweet potato in combination with little makhani gravy with little added fresh cream and cheese to skip the peanut butter.

Recipe- 3] SWEET POTATO CURRY

Ingredients:

Sweet potato- 400gms, cleaned and cubed

Oil- 2 tsp

Ghee- 1 tsp

Cumin seeds-1 tsp

Hing-1/4 tsp

Dry red chili- 1 no

Mustard seeds-1/2 tsp

Fennel seeds-1/2 tsp

Ginger-garlic paste-1 tsp

Onion paste- 1 cup

Tomato puree-1/2 cup

Cashew paste- 1 tbsp.

Salt to taste

Turmeric powder- ½ tsp

Coriander powder-1 tsp

Cumin powder-1/2 tsp

Garam masala powder-1/4 tsp

Water-1/2 cup

Fresh coriander leaves- 2 tbsp. chopped

Method:

  1. prepare all the ingredients as per the listed recipe.
  2. heat oil and ghee in a pan, add in the hing, cumin, mustard seeds and chili etc and give it all a nice stir.
  3. add in the onion paste, ginger-garlic paste and cook for 3-4 mins, add little water. Add in the tomato puree, salt and all powdered spices add in the cashew paste and a little curd as well if desired.
  4. allow the masala to cook for a few mins now add in the diced sweet potato cubes and mix, cover and simmer and allow to cook for 10-12 mins.
  5. check for seasonings, and turn off the flame once the potato is cooked just on the bite, do not overcook. Add some fresh chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with phulkas, rotis etc.

Recipe-4] SWEET POTATO & CAULIFLOWER CURRY

Ingredients:

Sweet potato- 400gms, peeled and cubed

Cauliflower- 400 gms, cut into med florets.

Oil-2 tbsp.

Ghee-1 tbsp.

Garlic-1 tsp chopped

Curry leaves- 8-10 no

Slit green chiles-1-2 no

Ginger-garlic- red chili paste- 1 tbsp. mix

Onion paste- 1 cup- fried, browned and then made into paste

Tomato puree-1/2 cup

Salt to taste

Red chili powder-1/2 tsp

Coriander powder-1 tbsp.

Water-1/2 cup

Cashew paste-2 tsp

Fresh cream-1 cup

Kasuri methi- 1 tsp

Fresh coriander leaves- 2 tbsp. chopped

Ginger juliennes- 2 tsp for garnish.

Method:

  1. prepare all the ingredients for the recipe as per the list.
  2. heat oil and ghee in a pan and add in the chilies and then add in the prepared paste with onion paste and others.
  3. ensure to mix all well, cook for 2 mins, add salt, tomato puree and all the powdered spices, add in some water as needed some cashew paste/ fresh cream and allow to simmer for a few mins.
  4. now add in the sweet potato cubes and cauliflower and mix well. place the mixture on a low flame and allow to cook in steam for around 15-20 mins.
  5. finally add in the fresh coriander and mix well, serve the recipe hot with phulkas, rotis, kachumber, dahi and papad.

Recipe- 5] SWEET POTATO CURRIED COCONUT BITES

Ingredients:

Sweet potato- 400 gms, peeled and cubed

Oil-2 tsp

Ghee-1 tsp

Salt to taste

Curry leaves- 8-10 no

Cumin seeds-1/2 tsp

Mustard seeds- ½ tsp

Hing-1/4 tsp

Dry red chilies-1 no slit

Green chilies-1 no slit

Water-1/2 cup

Fresh grated coconut-1 cup

Cumin powder-1/4 tsp

Chaat masala-1/2 tsp

Fresh coriander leaves- 3-4 tbsp. chopped

Coriander powder- 1 tsp

Cumin powder-1/2 tsp

Lime juice-2 tsp

Method:

  1. prepare all the ingredients for the recipe as per the list.
  2. cut the sweet potato after peeling and washing into uniform pieces.
  3. blanch the sweet potato in water and a little salt for a few mins and refresh the mixture. Use the liquid for cooking purpose.
  4. now to stir fry the recipe, heat oil and ghee in a pan, add in the spices one by one and allow to splutter and crackle.
  5. add in the blanched sweet potato, salt and all powdered spices, little water and cover and cook the sweet potato for 8-10 mins.
  6. finally add in fresh coriander, lime juice, few drops of lime juice. Serve this recipe with steaming hot rice, dal fry and papad.

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BRIEF ABOUT THE AUTHOR: DR. KAVIRAJ KHIALANI – CELEBRITY MASTER CHEF IS A MUMBAI-BASED FOOD & HOSPITALITY CONSULTANT. HE HAS WORKED WITH ESTEEMED BRANDS LIKE THE TAJ GROUP OF HOTELS, KUWAIT AIRWAYS AND MANY MORE. BESIDES HAVING SPECIALISED IN OVER 33 PLUS INTERNATIONAL CUISINES CHEF KAVIRAJ IS A RENOWNED NAME IN THE WORLD OF HOSPITALITY EDUCATION, TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT. HE HAS ALSO BEEN FEATURED ON STAR PLUS & COLORS TELEVISION. AN AWARDEE OF THE BHARAT VIDYA RATAN AWARD, BEST CHEF ASIA AWARD AND MANY MORE ACCOLADES MAKE HIM ONE OF THE ICONIC NAMES IN THE CULINARY WORLD.

 

 

 

 

 

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