This recipe was the result of an evening after a long day at work, when I looked sleepily into the fridge and the stars aligned for a quick and easy meal that tasted like it was well planned out and a long time in the making. Delish and done in 30 minutes. A satisfying, nutrient-rich vegan meal. I recommend making enough to have the next day as leftovers, as the flavors just keep getting better. This is a go-to meal in our house, but one that is rarely made with the exact same ingredients:
It's such a great time of year for greens and roots. I picked up the purple kale at the farmers' market out of curiosity -- usually I use one of the green types of kale, Swiss chard, or spinach. Any of these could be used instead of the purple kale.
I roasted the sweet potatoes while everything else was cooking on the stove top. You could just as well use butternut or kabocha squash, but I'd cut them up small to help them cook faster.
Black beans are my favorite for this dish, and I haven't tried with anything else, but I'm sure another kind of bean would be yummy, too.
I served this dish over quinoa, which is quick (15 minutes) and cooks up while I'm sauteing everything, but you could also use couscous, rice, millet or any grain that suits your fancy.
Black Beans with Sweet Potatoes and Purple Kale
2 medium sized sweet potatoes (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
8 - 10 cloves garlic, separated from the head but unpeeled (optional)
2 15-ounce cans black beans, rinsed
1 bunch kale, the thick center spines removed, leaves cut into small pieces
1 medium onion, diced
2 - 3 cloves garlic, diced
juice of half an orange (2 Tablespoons) or water
2 teaspoons cumin
1 - 2 teaspoons New Mexico chili powder
salt to taste
coconut oil (optional)
Quinoa or grain of your choice.
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. In a rimmed baking sheet, toss the sweet potato pieces and garlic cloves (if using) with just enough olive oil to lightly coat. Sprinkle with salt and 1/2 teaspoon cumin. Bake while you prepare the rest of the meal, about 30 minutes. Stir/flip the sweet potatoes after about 15 minutes.
3. If using quinoa, start that now. The typical quinoa recipe is 1 cup quinoa to 1.5 cups water. Rinse your quinoa before cooking with it. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for about 15 minutes.
4. While the quinoa cooks, heat a large skillet or wok over medium heat and add about 1 1/2 Tablespoons total of a mixture of olive oil and coconut oil (or just olive oil).
5. When hot, add the onions, stirring. Cook onions for about 3 - 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until translucent and soft.
6. Add cumin, chili powder and diced garlic, stir.
7. Add kale and the orange juice or water, stirring.
8. Cook for about 5 minutes, until kale is wilted.
9. Add the beans, stirring to integrate and heat.
10. To plate the dish, serve a scoop of quinoa, with a scoop of the beans on top, and a serving of the hot sweet potatoes and roasted garlic (note: to eat the garlic, simply slide the roasted clove out of the skin with your teeth, or do them all at once before serving, using a sharp pointy knife and your fingers). Garnish with cilantro. Another option is to mix the sweet potatoes directly into the beans before serving.
Enjoy and relax!