Sunday, January 17, 2016

Quinoa Stuffed Sweet Potato with Tahini Labneh Dressing


I've been seeing stuffed sweet potatoes around for a while now and immediately fell in love with the idea of them. At times when I'm feeling uninspired and/or lazy come lunchtime, I'll often grab a sweet potato, pierce it, put it in the microwave for 8 minutes (turning it halfway through), and once cooked through, I'll cut it in half length-ways and slather with lots of butter. Eaten with a spoon straight out of the skin its bliss and perfect for a cold day. But stuffed sweet potatoes are on a whole other level and coming across so many variations made me figure I could easily step it up a notch and make my own version. 

On this particular day when I decided to try out a stuffed sweet potato I had some quinoa salad left from the day before, and it was the perfect quick fix I was looking for. I really liked this combo so decided to stick with it and share it with you guys. 
With quinoa, roasted baby asparagus, sweetcorn and pomegranate this is a hearty, nourishing and complete meal in itself, especially if you use a large sweet potato and eat extra salad on the side as well. Pomegranate always adds that crunchy sweetness I love and when I made this a second time I added feta which gives a salty contrast to the sweetness of the potato. A generous drizzle of tahini, labneh, garlic and lemon dressing adds a delicious creamy kick. Dare I mention a trendy diet word or two and say this version here is gluten-free and vegetarian as well.


Don't forget to add a generous drizzle of tahini, labneh, garlic and lemon dressing for a creamy kick as mentioned in the recipe below. You could omit this and use a cashew cream instead if you wanted to make a vegan version. As with most vegetarian recipes I always say to feel free to swap out for different vegetables and make the recipe to your own taste. The quinoa really just forms the base of the 'stuffing' here. Infact you could easily make this a healthy weekday recipe too by adding shredded chicken or minced beef to the mix. 

Even if you don't stick to the recipe here, next time you're stuck on what to eat for lunch or evening meal, try stuffing your sweet potato with a homemade salad. It will fill you up and the options you can fill them with are endless. 

Quinoa Stuffed Sweet Potato with Tahini Labneh Dressing
Serves 1

One large sweet potato, baked or cooked in the microwave
1 cup of quinoa, boiled and seasoned 
A small handful of boiled sweetcorn
5-6 olive oil roasted & seasoned baby asparagus, sliced
Crumbled feta
Handful pomegranate arils
Coriander, pepper and dried chili flakes to garnish
Baby spinach, to serve

1. Prepare the tahini labneh dressing as below.
2. Gently cut the sweet potato in quarters, without slicing all the way through. so that the potato is still in one piece. Use your hands to prise the sweet potato open leaving space in the centre to spoon the quinoa into.
3. Mix together all the rest of ingredients apart from the garnishes.
4. Spoon the quinoa salad into the centre of the sweet potato.
5. Drizzle the tahini labneh dressing over the stuffing, and garnish with the coriander, pepper and chili flakes.
6. Serve with a side of baby spinach if desired. 

For the tahini labneh dressing

1/4 cup tahini,
3 tbsp labneh
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tsp lemon juice

1. Mix all the ingredients together and add a couple of teaspoons of water to make the dressing slightly runny. Add a little more water if needed. 
2. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for upto a week.

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