Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sweet Potato, Swiss Chard, and Sorghum

A home-cooked meal, from start to finish, it such a wonderful thing. For those who enjoy these meals on a daily basis, it's easy to take them for granted. And that's part of what I love about blogging like this - after baking or cooking, I get to stop and look at what we've made, take pictures of it, and then relish in the beauty and taste. 

Last week, we had one of "those" dinners, the kind of dinner that I stopped to admire because of the health factor, the homemade factor, and the yum-o factor: Chicken, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato soup with Swiss Chard and fresh Whole Wheat Bread. Now it's time to share!

Whole Wheat Bread

adapted from Zesty Cook Easy Whole Wheat Bread
  • 2 tsp local honey
  • 2 2/3 C warm water
  • 4 tsp active dry yeast
  • 3 T organic sorghum
  • 5 C organic whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 C wheat germ
  • 1 T oats
    • Stir honey into 2/3 C warm water
    • Sprinkle yeast over mixture and let rest for 10 minutes
    • Combine sorghum with 2/3 C warm water; combine with yeast mixture
    • Stir into flour; add salt, wheat germ, and 1 1/3 C warm water
    • This is a very sticky, gooey dough
    • Pour into non-stick pan, smooth top with wet fingers or spatula, and sprinkle with oats
    • Cover with towel and let sit until rises to top of pan (less than 1 hour)
    • Bake at 400° for 30-40 minutes
Chicken, Black Bean, and Sweet Potato Soup
adapted from our very own Gran's recipe box

  • 2 local organic chicken breasts
  • 1 box organic low sodium chicken broth (with extra water, if needed)
  • 2 small-medium organic sweet potatoes
  • 1 small organic onion
  • 1/2 organic pepper (red or green)
  • 1 can green chilies (I had whole chilies and chopped them myself)
  • 1 can organic black beans, rinsed
  • Mild salsa
  • Organic sour cream and fresh cilantro for garnish
    • Saute onion, pepper in organic olive oil
    • Add chicken breasts and chicken broth; simmer until chicken is done
    • Remove chicken and shred or chop; return to pot
    • Add diced sweet potatoes; simmer until cooked
    • Add green chilies, salsa, black beans - extra salsa, salt, and pepper are good flavor boosters
    • Serve with a dollop of sour cream and cilantro
Swiss Chard
  • 1 big bunch organic swiss chard (ours was homegrown from Gran and Grandpa's garden!)
  • Olive oil
  • Crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt
  • Organic lemon
    • Heat approx 2 T olive oil over medium
    • Add red pepper flakes (more or less depending on desired spice-quotient)
    • Add roughly chopped swiss chard and cover
    • Cook until swiss chard is wilted and tender
    • Squeeze lemon over before serving

I loved everything about this meal. I've made the soup many times and the girls eat every drop. This was my second attempt with the bread recipe - I used sorghum this time (the original recipe calls for molasses) and I increased the salt. We thought it was much tastier and, as far as a no-knead whole wheat bread goes, it's great. And the swiss chard? Loved it. Thank you for enjoying this little walk down meal-memory lane with me - I'm so thankful for this kind of dinner. 

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