Sunday, May 19, 2013

Cooking Challenge; Sweet Potato, Cinnamon & Chicken

I posted my first Cooking Challenge up on my Facebook page last week (like my page so you can chime in with your ideas, too!). I asked people to choose any 3 ingredients to try and make a meal out of; Chopped style, if you will. I chose at random, and it was Veronica's ingredients I was challenged with!

Sweet potato

My biggest problem with those ingredients? I HATE sweet potatoes! And cinnamon? To me, that belongs in desserts. It is very rare that I would find that to be acceptable spice in a savory dish. However, this wasn't entirely a "savory" meal I'd be putting together, because although it dealt with potatoes, it was a sweet potato. So it was a comforty, savory, sweet meal I'd need to put together.


I did take the safe route and tried to come up with a soup. And guess what? I'd honestly give myself a 7 out of 10 for this one. Let me tell you why..

I'll go ahead and take you through my head during this process...
1. I used the cinnamon to flavor the sweet potato as it was boiling. My entire home smelled like cinnamon and sweet potato while it cooked and it was surprisingly heavenly.
2. I felt like a bit of a "nutty" flavor would go well with this, so instead of using olive oil or water to help smooth out my sweet potato in the food processor, I used browned butter instead.
3. I typically like soups to be smooth, so I went ahead and blended the grated garlic and minced onions into the sweet potato puree before mixing it with the broth

What I'd change: 
1. The chicken. I chose to do a soup, so my options for how to incorporate the chicken was a little bit limited for my knowledge, and having it just mixed in didn't fit well. I think croutons would be a better fit to top this off.
2. I am convinced that if I'd blended some roasted red bell peppers into it and kept it thick like a spread for some baguette slices, it would be ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. I will be testing that idea out soon.
3. I feel like I copped out with the cinnamon. I could not taste it at all, so I think I'd try and be a little more bold with it next time around.

Bottom Line:
1. It was pretty darn good for someone that doesn't even like sweet potato. But again, omit the chicken and turn it into a spread with some roasted red peppers and it would be to die for.

What you will need:
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled, washed and cubed
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 4 T butter, divided
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1/4 C onions, minced
  • 1 T flour
  • 1 C Chicken stock or broth (I had broth on hand)
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1/2 C heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • Shredded chicken to top (but....lesbianest, you don't need it)
  • Boil the cubes of sweet potato with 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • Using 2 T of butter, make some browned butter and set aside
  • When the sweet potatoes are tender, add to a blender, food processor or mixer of some kind and blend, adding in the browned butter until smooth
  • Add in garlic and onions and blend again until smooth
  • Using the other 2 T of butter, mix with the flour over medium heat with a whisk until it's smooth and has turned to a light caramel shade to make a roux
  • Add chicken stock/broth and brown sugar into the roux and bring to a boil
  • Turn down heat and let simmer for a couple of minutes, stirring often
  • Add the sweet potato puree to the broth and blend well
  • Add in heavy cream until it reaches desired consistency
  • Add in thyme and simmer until it's blended well and warm
  • Top with chicken (but don't)

1 comment :

  1. This soup looks absolutely delicious (I love sweet potatoes!) and your pictures are amazing!
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