Lentil Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Za’atar Sauce

At the start of the year, Matt and I started meal planning. This means that we have a little magnetic calendar that sticks to our fridge and every Sunday we plan out what we’re going to make for dinner that upcoming week. We decided to do this for a couple of reasons. 1. Sometimes you come home and you just don’t know what to make and you don’t want to think about it, so planning ahead helps with that! 2. There’s less food waste because you only get what you need when you go grocery shopping and finally, 3. It gives you the opportunity to try new recipes which is always good!

Anyway, on the meal plan for yesterday was lentils. I love a good bowl of lentils with rice, don’t get me wrong (see: https://threebirdsonescone.wordpress.com/2014/10/20/lentils/) but I wanted to something a bit different yesterday. So I started browsing food blogs as I do and I came across this post http://dishingupthedirt.com/recipes/smoky-lentil-stuffed-sweet-potatoes/ Stuffed sweet potatoes are not a new thing for me- I’ve made them before, but I needed a reminder of how good they are and DUTD reminded me of that. So, I decided to my own version of it and I think it turned out pretty good! I added a sauce to it and probably ate about half of it at once (woops!) so all in all, I’d say it’s a crowd pleaser. Let me know what you think!

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LENTIL STUFFED SWEET POTATOES WITH ZA’ATAR SAUCE

 Ingredients:

  • 2 small sweet potatoes or up to 4 depending on how many people you are feeding
  • 1 lb bag of green lentils
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 3 cups coconut milk, 1.5 cups water (and more if needed)
  • 1.5 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt

For Sauce:

  • ¼ cup of tahini
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • ½ teaspoon za’atar

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400.
  2. Prick your sweet potatoes with a fork all around and place them on a baking sheet and in the oven. They will need around an hour or more depending on their size.
  3. Over medium high heat, heat a deep pan and then add the coconut oil. Once heated a little, add the onion and start sautéing it, stirring occasionally.
  4. Once the onion starts to look a little golden around the edges, add the carrot and cook them together for a few minutes more.
  5. Then, add the tomato and garlic and cook until the tomatoes start to soften and incorporate into the rest of the vegetables.
  6. Add the spices and cook for two more minutes. Then add your lentils in and mix until they are covered in the spice/vegetable mixture.
  7. Add the water and coconut milk and turn the heat up so it reaches a boil. Then turn it down and simmer for another 45 minutes or so. If they look like they are running out of liquid before they are soft, add some more water. Ultimately, you don’t want them to be too liquid-y though because you want to stuff the sweet potatoes with them.
  8. Prepare the sauce by whisking together all the ingredients. If you need more water to make your sauce looser, add more in.
  9. Assemble! Take the sweet potatoes out of the oven and stuff them with the lentil filling and pour some of the sauce on top. Add an extra squeeze of lemon at the end too for an extra nice, bright flavor! Enjoy!

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