Every Thursday I volunteer with a dietitian and listen to people talk about what they eat on a daily basis.
I gather that many people living in New York City go out to eat…a lot. And who is to blame? There are so many available and easy restaurants to eat at here.
Dietitians talk about making small dietary and lifestyle changes. Small changes may add up to big results later.
Even myself, working 5 nights a week as a pastry cook (nevermind that I am a dietitian-in-training and a pastry cook all at the same time…trust me, I am in a constant state of confusion…), I live for my one night a week that I actually get to cook dinner.
Cooking at home can cut your sodium/saturated fat intake by a great deal. And hopefully you will have leftovers to eat for lunch the next day or so. Oh, and it’s probably a lot cheaper.
This stew that I made from Sprouted Kitchen’s blog really hit the spot for me this week. I rarely cook with cabbage, and I enjoyed it very much in this stew. And I think that pureeing a bit of the soup just to thicken the broth a bit is key here. Plus the avocado + tortilla crispies are divine.
February is national Healthy Heart month. Do something good for your heart and make this stew. Your heart will thank you later.
Black Bean Sweet Potato Stew with tortilla crispies and avo chunks
from Sprouted Kitchen, serves 4-6
1 T. coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 a small head of cabbage, chopped
2 medium sweet potatoes (about 3 cups), peeled and cubed (you could also use a winter squash)
3 cups veggie broth
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. cocoa powder
pinch of chipotle powder, cayenne pepper, or chili flakes
2 cups cooked black beans (about 1 can drained and rinsed)
salt to taste
3 corn tortillas
scant 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
In a heavy bottomed pot, warm the coconut oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and saute until just beginning to brown, about 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic, cabbage, squash and broth. Turn the heat down to a gentle simmer, cover the pot and cook for about 15-20 minutes for the vegetables to cook.
Add the spices and the beans and stir. Let everything continue to cook another ten minutes for the flavors to blend. Salt to taste. Pulse the soup a few times with an immersion blender to thicken up the broth a bit. This is optional, but makes it seem a bit thicker. You could alternatively, run just a bit of the soup through a blender or food processor, and add it back in to the pot. OR a sprinkle of cornmeal will help thicken it as well. (I put a bit of my soup in the blender and added it back to the pot)
For the tortilla crispies, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Stack them and slice into thin matchsticks. Spread on a baking sheet, drizzle with the oil, sprinkle the salt and toss gently to coat. Spread them in a single layer on the baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes until they are light brown and crispy, giving the pan a shake halfway through.
Garnish each both with some diced avocado, a handful of chopped cilantro and some of the tortilla crispies!