|Za'atar Sweet Potatoes and Garlicky Kale|
One of the great things about having a food blog is that occasionally, I get to review cookbooks. The good people of TLC books sent me a copy of the book One Part Plant to review. This cookbook was written by Jessica Murname, and she advocates eating one meal per day that is plant based. She had success with her endometriosis by modifying her diet to exclude what she calls "inflammatory foods". A quick Google search tells me that there are no hard and fast rules regarding what is and isn't "inflammatory".....in fact, there is a lot of pseudoscience out there in this space. I did find a source I could trust in Andrew Weil. So I approached this cookbook with some trepidation. I just cooked a meal for 70 people yesterday at church and was overwhelmed at the special requests. It seems everyone is looking for a magic bullet these days.
However, if this mode of eating helped the author with her health issue, I'm fine with that. I think the book would have been better if it just focused on the concept of eating one plant based meal per day (and skipped the gluten free) message because eating more fruits and vegetables is good for everyone, not just women with endometriosis or people that want to dabble in the gluten free space.
That being said, once I got into the recipes, I was really pleased with the book! It came to me just in time for Lent, as I don't eat meat on Fridays during this time. I tried out her recipe for Za'atar Sweet Potatoes and Garlicky Kale (see picture shown above) and it came out delicious. I loved the combination of sweet potato and kale - never thought to put them together. Her recipe for za'atar isn't my preference, but I included it here in case you can't get your hands on the good stuff. The author is from Charleston, SC, so my guess is she doesn't have access to the great Arabic food I have in the Dearborn area. Also, I streamlined her recipe to make it quicker by precooking the sweet potatoes in the microwave instead of boiling them and improved the recipe by adding the garlic after cooking the kale to insure better flavor.
Za'atar Sweet Potatoes and Garlicky Kale
makes 4 servings
2 c. peeled and chopped sweet potatoes
1 T. za'atar (or use her recipe below)
6 c. kale, destemmed and chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
Preheat oven to 400 F. Put sweet potatoes in a microwave safe dish and cover loosely and cook on high for about 5 minutes until tender. Coat potatoes with oil and spread out on a cookie sheet. Roast them for 10 minutes or until slightly browned. Sprinkle with za'atar.
Meanwhile, add some more olive oil to a skillet and saute kale until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant. Mix potatoes and kale together and add salt and pepper if needed.
1 T. toasted sesame seeds
1 T Sumac
2 t. dried thyme
1/4 t. sea salt (I used kosher)
If you want to check out this cookbook, you can at do so at HarperCollins.