This vegetarian winner has three complementary components – each bit goes really well with other things and can be made and stored for 2-3 days. The herb smash is a delicious companion to boiled potatoes, the sweet potato can be served with grilled mackerel or salmon and the black-eyed beans are great with salad leaves, avocado and a soft-boiled egg for a lunch box.
Make the Nishi Sweet potato
4 small sweet potatoes
6 large tbsp Vita Coco coconut oil
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
3 tsp 5 spice
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
3 tbsp honey (or golden syrup)
3 tbsp soy sauce
- Preheat oven to 180c
- Prick the sweet potatoes, then either place in a bowl and cover with cling film and microwave for 10 minutes, or wrap tightly in tin foil and bake in the oven for 25 minutes.
- While baking, heat 2 tbsp of coconut oil in a small pan. When runny add the garlic and turn down the heat so the garlic slices cook slowly. When the garlic turns a light blonde colour add the honey, soy, vinegar and 5 spice. Simmer for 3 mins until a soft syrup has formed. Set aside.
- Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven, remove foil, check for softness, then cut a V-shaped opening.
- Fill with coconut butter and rub some over the skin. Sprinkle with salt and return to the oven for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove when golden brown.
- Spoon on the soy/spice sauce – about 2 tbsp for each one – return to the oven and bake for 7 mins more until completely caramelised.
Make the bean filling
250g can black-eyed beans
1 red onion, blitzed
2 chillies, blitzed
4 garlic cloves, blitzed
2 tbsp grated ginger
2 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs rosemary
600 ml water
salt and black pepper
40 ml olive oil
1 tbsp cider vinegar
- Heat the oil on a medium heat, add the beans, fry for 7 mins, then add the onion, chilli, garlic, ginger, rosemary and thyme. Fry for 15 mins until the onions are golden.
- Add the salt, pepper and vinegar, stir in for 30 seconds.
- Add the water, boil for about 30 mins until completely soft, drain but save the water.
- Return the water to the hob and reduce until it’s just a couple of tbsp of syrup, pour back over the beans.
Make the herb smash
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch of coriander
2 sprigs of thyme
4 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp sea salt flakes
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tsp honey
1 tbsp cider vinegar
4 tbsp olive oil
- While everything else is boiling and roasting, make the herb smash.
- Finely chop the herbs or blitz in a mixer.
- Add all the other ingredients and blitz a little more into a rough paste.
Toss the black beans through the caramelised coconut-y sauce on the baking tray. Nestle the sweet potatoes on top of the beans and split the herb smash between the potato and beans.
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