I am devoting this week to three tropical recipes because:
- (a) I’ve been craving the fresh and bright flavors indicative of island fare.
- (b) I’ve been daydreaming about warm water, wide expanses of sand, and cool ocean breezes.
The first of these recipes features sweet potatoes and a delicious tropical fruit. Any guesses as to what made its way into these twice-baked sweet potatoes?
I’ve been on a total mango kick lately.
True, mangos are not indigenous to New England, but they are currently in season down south. Floridian and Mexican mangos are flooding grocery store produce sections, and Whole Foods routinely features sale prices so low I find myself buying four or five at a time.
I’ve been eating them atop salads, mixed into yogurt, and straight off of the pit while hovering over the kitchen sink, without the slightest concern regarding the sticky sweet juices running down my hands.
The other night, amidst a brainstorming session of what to make for dinner, I spied a lone, perfectly ripe champagne mango. Soft but not overly mushy, and just starting to show black spots on its dark yellow skin, this mango was destined to become part of my evening meal.
John was out at a softball game with the league he plays for, so it was the perfect opportunity for an easy, low-key, Lauren-centric dinner.
A quick perusal of our kitchen revealed the dregs of a bag of Trader Joe’s organic sweet potatoes, and the search ended there.
While the potato was baking, I pureed the mango flesh into a vibrant and luscious sauce.
Once the potato reached the perfect degree of doneness, I scooped out the sweet flesh, added it into the mango sauce, and pureed the mixture together along with some spices for flavor and coconut butter for richness.
I transfered the mixture back into the sweet potato skin, baked it again until the filling was warmed through, and then dolloped a bit of Greek yogurt on top.
Don’t you just want to dive face-first into this gorgeous mango-stuffed twice-baked sweet potato?!
It took a lot of self-restraint not to gobble up the entire potato before snapping some photos of it. The aromatic steam wafting up and clouding my camera lens was intoxicating, but my patience was rewarded when I finally sat down to enjoy my creation.
The flavor combination of mango and sweet potato is not one to be overlooked. Sweet, floral, and almost citrusy, the two orange nutrition powerhouses compliment each other fantastically well. To be honest, the mild coconut butter flavor was lost amongst the spicy ginger, sweet cinnamon, and warm allspice, so feel free to omit it if you’d like.
I’m already thinking of variations for these twice-baked potatoes, such as adding in chopped pineapple and shredded toasted coconut.
What would you add?
Tropical Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes
yield: two servings
- 2 medium organic sweet potatoes (about 5 inches long), scrubbed and dried
- 2 very ripe Ataulfo/champagne mangoes, peeled, pitted, and chopped
- 2 tsp coconut butter, at room temperature
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- tiny pinch ground allspice
- salt to taste
- plain 2% Greek yogurt, for serving
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Place sweet potatoes onto a foil-lined baking sheet and bake until soft, about 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, place chopped mango into the bowl of a food processor. Process until fully pureed.
- Remove potatoes from the oven, and slice the top of each from one end to the other. Carefully scoop out the sweet potato flesh, leaving some attached to the skin so the potatoes maintain their shape.
- Add the sweet potato flesh to the mango puree in the food processor bowl. Process until smooth. Add in the remaining ingredients and puree until well-incorporated.
- Evenly divide the sweet potato-mango puree between the potato skins.
- Return the filled potatoes to the oven and cook until heated through, about 10-15 minutes.
- Top potatoes with Greek yogurt and serve hot.
*TIP: Eat the sweet potato skin! Not only it is tasty, it is also packed with nutrients.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (without the Greek yogurt):
240 calories, 3.6 grams fat, 2.8 grams saturated fat, 52.8 grams carbohydrates, 7.6 grams fiber, 34.4 grams sugar, 3.5 grams protein