Oh healthy day! If you are like me, you have had your fair share of cookies, cheese, wine, beer, and gravy over the course of the winter so far. And if you are like me, there will probably be some unhealthy “hibernating” food as we get snowed in tomorrow yet again.
I love to eat creamy soups like the corn and crab chowder I am working on, indulge in cake like the flourless chocolate cake I am making this evening, and taste all sorts of delicious wines, but I only enjoy those things because of a careful balance. Healthy weekday meals are a major part of that balance. While I find my breakfast and lunch usually a little too mundane for blog fodder, I am pretty excited about some of the easy, healthy dinners that we have.
One recent, make ahead meal was a baked sweet potato bar. I knew we were going to be out of the house all day and until about 8 pm without a chance to grab dinner, so the night before I baked two large sweet potatoes all the way through. When dinnertime came, I just popped them in the microwave to heat up.
As you would imagine, baked stuffed potatoes of the regular variety are pretty big in Ireland, where they are called jacket potatoes, and some of my stranger baked potato combinations are actually things I have eaten there. One Galway restaurant I love to visit is called Couch Potatas, a cozy café where you can get potatoes stuffed with everything from curried vegetables to coleslaw, beans, and cheese. For some reason, there is a LOT of coleslaw in Irish cuisine. I generally like it, but it’s a bit much when you order the salad plate and every salad on the dish is covered in mayo. I have learned to ask over the years
On this particular evening, I did decide to make my baked potato with the coleslaw, baked beans, and aged Kerrygold cheddar combination.
I pre-purchased the coleslaw from Market Basket which was a bad idea; it is much better to make this sort of thing on your own.
In my potato, I also used half of a can of vegetarian baked beans and a handful of shredded cheddar.
I also ended up sneaking in a couple of scoops of homemade hummus, my own very simple blend of chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, and garlic.
Baked potato bar nights are a favorite in our house because of the versatility of the toppings. From grilled chicken, to vegetarian chili, to tuna melt potatoes, baked potatoes are a fun, quick, and cheap way to get in a healthy meal after a long day.
What are your favorite baked potato toppings or ways to eat potatoes? I have a MAJOR weakness for some good French fries. . .