Monday, October 27, 2008

Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites; Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burrito

I'm really excited to share this week's cookbook: Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites (published in 1996). This is one of my favorite cookbooks; if I were allowed only 5 cookbooks to take with me to a desert island (you know, one that had all the food stuffs I could ever possibly desire...), this would be in the suitcase before you said "boo." Do not be scared off by the "low-fat" in the title -- Yes, they're all low fat, and healthy, and you can even use the nutritional information provided for each recipe to figure out Weight Watchers Points if you're so inclined (my copy has my Points calculations written in up in the corner of most pages). But, honest, the reason I love this cookbook? Everything tastes amazing.

In what I think is a neat change of pace, this week I will only post recipes that I have personally tried, and loved.
Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burrito

Sweet potatoes add an unexpected creaminess to the filling in these burritos. One young Moosewood waitperson said this was the first time she had ever loved a burrito without cheese. Serve the burritos on a bed of rice, if you like, with plenty of salsa.l

5 cups peeled cubed sweet potatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons canola or other vegetable oil
3 1/2 cups diced onions
4 large garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon minced fresh green chile
4 teaspoons ground cumin
4 teaspoons ground coriander
4 1/2 cups cooked black beans (three 15-ounce cans, drained)
2/3 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
8 eight-inch flour tortillas
Fresh Tomato Salsa (page 360)

Preheat the oven to 350°

Place the sweet potatoes in a medium saucepan with the salt and water to cover. Cover and bring to a boil, then simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

While the sweet potatoes are cooking, warm the oil in a medium skillet or saucepan and add the onions, garlic, and chile. Cover and cook on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, about 7 minutes. Add the cumin and coriander and cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and set aside.

In a food processor, combine the black beans, cilantro, lemon juice, salt, and cooked sweet potatoes and purée until smooth (see Note). Transfer the sweet potato mixture to a large mixing bowl and mix in the cooked onions and spices.

Lightly oil a large baking dish. Spoon about 2/3 to 3/4 cup of the filling in the center of each tortilla, roll it up, and place it, seam side down, in the baking dish. Cover tightly with foil and bake for about 30 minutes, until piping hot. Serve topped with salsa.

Serves 4 to 6
Preparation time: 35 minutes
Baking time: 30 minutes

Note: You can also mash the ingredients in a large bowl by hand using a potato masher. The result will be a less smooth but nicely textured filling.
We tend to triple this recipe. Yes, triple. If you wrap each burrito in foil before baking, you can then plop them in the freezer for take-to-work lunches. So! Good! So inexpensive! So tasty! So healthy! And so darned easy. (Take out of the foil before nuking up at work, folks.)

Chefly Husband has crossed out the word "lemon" in the ingredients list, and written in "lime." You can choose whichever citrus you have on hand.

What do I love most about these burritos? They taste like they have cheese in them. They do not have cheese in them! They taste cheesy and creamy and rich! This effect is lessened, though, if you use a potato masher and leave in lumps -- the smooth texture of the sweet potatoes fools the mouth.

I forget if, when we first made these up and fell in love, we used a food mill or a ricer to purée the mixture. I know we didn't have a food processor or blender in our lives yet. I got this book the year after it came out, and have been cooking from it constantly ever since.

I've never been to Ithaca, so I've never had the opportunity to eat at Moosewood. It sounds like a hoopy sort of place, and I'm really excited to go through the recipes here this week. Which I may have said already, but I get kind of bouncy giddy about the Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites. It's worthy of a gushy post or seven.

No comments:

Post a Comment