Dal Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

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One of the first recipes we posted on this blog, soon six years ago(!), was an Indian lentil soup. Looking back on that photo and the short text that came with it, I definitely feel that we have learned a whole bit about food photography, recipe writing and blogging during these years. But one thing that stands strong from that old post is the actual recipe. We still make that lentil soup often, most regularly during the cold months (which in Scandinavia translates to 9 out of 12 months). Everyone in our family likes it and it’s a very quick and hassle-free recipe to cook when you also have to keep an eye on two kids running laps around the apartment (or one of them is running and the other one is toddling and wobbling after her).

My point is that lentil stew or dal, as it is called in India, has always been one of our favourite comfort foods and we just haven’t posted it enough here on the blog.

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So when we were approached by Swedish spice company Santa Maria, asking us to create a few recipes for their new range of organic and fair-trade spices, we realised that this was the perfect opportunity to make another dal. Anyone that has cooked a dal knows that the spices play a really central role in the recipe. This is a new version of our old recipe. We added apricots for extra sweetness and decided on a new way of serving it – stuffed inside baked sweet potatoes. This is probably the most comforting dinner we have ever made, with lots of warm, sweet flavours that contrast the tangy yogurt and fresh pomegranate seeds on top. We usually make this as a weekday dinner with an extra large batch of lentils that last through the week. If you crave more greens, the sweet potato is gorgeous together with a fresh salad.

Santa Maria actually had a film crew in our house while we shot this recipe and have released a video and some additional photos along with the recipes on their site.

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Stuffed Sweet Potato with Dal
Serves 4

This makes a quite generous serving of dal so you will probably (hopefully) end up with some leftovers. You will thank us the day after, it tastes even better then.

4 medium sized sweet potatoes

3 tbsp butter, ghee or coconut oil
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
4 dried apricots, roughly chopped
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tbsp organic turmeric
2 tsp organic cardamom
1/2 tsp organic chili flakes
2 carrots, sliced
1 2/3 cups / 400 ml /  red lentils
4 cups / 1 liter water
1 tsp sea salt flakes
2 fresh tomatoes, cut in boats
70 g spinach or baby spinach

Topping
1/2 cup / 125 ml natural yogurt
1/2 cup / 65 g toasted pumpkin seeds or sprouted green lentils
1 pomegranate, seeds
fresh coriander/cilantro

Preheat the oven at 400°F/200°C.
Give each sweet potato a tiny slit at the top and place them on a baking pan.
Bake for about 45-60 minutes or until the skin is crisp and the flesh is soft. Prepare the dal while the potatoes are in the oven.
Place a large pot on medium heat. Add butter, onion, garlic, apricots, ginger, turmeric, cardamom and chili flakes. Saute for a few minutes, until the onion is soft and the kitchen has a lovely scent from all the spices. You can add a splash of water if they start to get burned. Add carrots and lentils and let cook for two more minutes, then add water and salt and give it a good stir. Decrease the heat when it starts to boil, put the lid on and let simmer for 15-25 minutes (depending on the lentils). Stir occasionally to make sure the lentils aren’t getting burned. Add more water if needed. Remove from the heat when the lentils almost have dissolved, add tomatoes and spinach. Taste and add more salt or spices if needed.

Place each sweet potato on a plate. Make a cut at the top and squeeze the ends together to open. Add a couple of spoonfuls lentil stew in the potato (you can carve out some flesh if you prefer more filling but we just fill it with as much as we can fit, messy is good). Top with yogurt, pumpkin seeds, pomegranate seeds, fresh cilantro and some freshly ground black pepper. Enjoy!

Disclosure: We were compensated by Santa Maria for creating this recipe.

62 Comments

  • Lentil soup is one of my husband's favorite foods on earth, and I love sweet potatoes. How have I never thought to combine the two? This looks delicious- and I'm definitely trying this dal as we approach fall.
  • I love stuffing sweet potatoes with veggies mixtures and stews, and I can't wait to give your dal a try. Looks so vibrant and delicious!
  • Oh wow. It is great to see your old pictures as it means that with hard work photo skills can get better:) Congrats ton on the awesome collaboration and thanks for sharing this lovely recipe
  • Sarah-Jane
    Your recipe for the first Indian Lentil Soup is one of my favourites. I make it at least once a month for myself and my housemates and it never disappoints us. So you can just imagine how excited I am for this updated version : ) Thank you xx
  • What a great idea for a recipe. I love that about daal too, that it's so versatile, watered down for soup, dried up can be used for other things, fillings, pastes etc. Great daal recipe, definitely going to try this, thank you! :)
  • What a brilliant idea! It is amazing to see how much your blog has developed from your post six years ago, I have enjoyed reading it over the years and seeing your talent grow. H x
  • Stuffing them in sweet potatoes, what a brilliant idea!
  • yumm!!! your recipes always make me hungry :D https://aspoonfulofnature.wordpress.com/
  • What a delicious combination for a rainy autumn day! I love all these colors and your beautiful photos :)
  • Have been eating daal a lot recently - must be the time of year. Have never thought to stuff in potatoes though - lovely idea! Beautifully coloured dish!
  • I would never think of stuffing a potato with something that is basically a soup. But this looks delicious and the colours, such a happy meal.
  • I find the jacket potato here in the UK a bit boring. Adding dal instead is such a great idea for a weeknight meal + to add punch to an ordinary meal! So healthy too! I can't wait to try this :)
  • My mum has always been a huge fan of Dhal so I grew up eating it and still make it for myself a lot. I have never stuffed it into a sweet potato though but love the idea - will definitely give this a try during these colder months so thanks for the neat idea!
  • Okay, I've never seen anything like this before. Looks beautiful and very delicious! absolutely amazing and i'm absolutely going to try this recipe, besides I love sweat potatoes very much. thanks huge for the recipe
  • I'm looking forward to trying your dal recipe. I'm a big fan of Indian food - I love the spices and the way it showcases how wonderful vegetarian food can be.
  • Wow! This is absolutely beautiful. Dal is one my favorite foods, and stuffing it into a sweet potato is genius!
  • Nathalia
    I love all type of lentil stews and it just sounds so perfect served in a sweet potato. I'm going to try it right away!
  • The apricots in this is such a neat idea!! Loving the looks of this dal! And in a potato I can only imagine how yummy this is.

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