I feel I need to make a serious confession here…
I’m currently going through a bit of a personal crisis: I’ve totally, completely lost my inspiration in the kitchen! I just can’t be bothered to cook much at all. Truth be told, I’ve been practically living off this Ground Beef with Sweet Potatoes and Spinach Bowl Food Thingy for the last couple of months now…
No word of a lie, I must have had it at least 3 to 4 times a week for 2 months straight. Good thing is, I just can’t get enough of it. I can’t believe, however, that after all this time, I still haven’t managed to come up with a decent name for it… but still, since I’ve been eating it so much, I figured I’d at least share the recipe. Decent name or no decent name.
I think I’m a tad confused and don’t really know what I want anymore. My body is badly craving all of those foods that it used to love so much and my mind is fighting it with all its might, resulting in my not knowing how or what to cook anymore. All I seem to be craving lately are pizzas and lasagna and pasta and warm homemade bread. And cheese. All kinds of cheese. Oh, and peanuts! I’ve never, ever craved peanuts so badly in my entire life. Heck, I never really even liked peanuts to start with. But now? I want to eat peanut [butter/chocolate] EVERYTHING!
Hopefully, this’ll pass soon… I’m thinking it’s probably just a bit of a seasonal depression. As soon as that snow goes away, that inspiration of mine will start flowing right back again!
In the meantime, I guess I’ll focus on making quick and easy meals such as this one…
Hey, quick and easy is good, isn’t it?
Start by melting a teaspoon of ghee in a large skillet set over medium-high heat and then throw in some chopped onion; cook until softened, fragrant and slightly colored, about 2 minutes. (I sometimes skip this step, when I’m feeling particularly uninspired… just sayin’, you know!)
Then, crank up the heat and add the ground beef and salt. Break the meat into little pieces with a wooden spoon to help it cook faster and continue cooking until the meat is no longer pink, about 7 or 8 minutes. Throw in the ground pepper, garlic powder, fish sauce and Frank’s Red Hot (if using) and stir.
Note that I used beef this time around, but I’ve made all kinds of different versions of this same dish using ground pork, ground veal and even ground turkey. Any ground meat will do, really. Just feel free to use whichever meat you prefer, or happen to have on hand.
When your meat is fully cooked, transfer it to a bowl or plate and then return the skillet to the heat source. Melt the remaining ghee and add the baked and cooled sweet potatoes to the skillet. Cook until nicely caramelized on each side, about 1 minute per side.
About those baked sweet potatoes, they are something that I ALWAYS keep in the fridge nowadays. Once a week, I’ll wrap 2 or 3 large tubers in aluminium foil and then bake them in a 375ºF oven for about 45 minutes to an hour (depending on size), until they feel soft when I squeeze them lightly with my fingers.
I then let them cool and transfer them to the fridge (I store them straight in the aluminium foil) so I always have ’em handy to use in all kinds of dishes such as this one, or to throw in my morning post workout shakes, or to treat myself to a yummy Chocolate Mug Cake.
Most of the time, though, I’ll simply pan fry them and eat them right alongside a couple of eggs and leftover Roasted Chicken. Yeah, that would be another one of my favorite meals of the late…
Alright, let’s get back to our Bowl Food Thingy dish, shall we?
So as soon as your potatoes are done to your liking (which, in all likelihood, may not be quite as dark as mine!), return the cooked meat to the skillet and then mix lightly to combine with the sweet potatoes.
Now mound the spinach leaves on top of the meat and sweet potatoes. It may look like a lot, but you know how it goes with spinach, right? – Right.
This HUGE pile will soon come down to almost nothing.
Kill the heat and cover your pan with a large heat resistant bowl, preferably stainless steel, but glass or ceramic would also do the trick. If you didn’t have any of that on hand, you could also use a saucepan or another skillet and place it upside down over your spinach.
Let that sit for a few minutes to give your spinach a chance to wilt some.
See? It’s almost all gone already… Now that’s way more manageable! At least, now we’ll be able to stir without sending spinach flying all over the stove top.
Still, you’ll want to proceed and stir that spinach in very delicately, until all the ingredients are well distributed and the spinach is completely wilted.
Serve this dish piping hot with a few teaspoons of Harissa, if you’re a fan. I know I am!
Ooooooooooh… Harissa! That gives me an idea… Now here’s something I could try my hand at! I’ve never made my own Harissa before. That could be a lot of fun!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have an inspiration that requires my attention… You go ahead and eat, while I investigate that!
- 1 tbsp ghee, (store-bought or homemade), divided
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 500g (1.1lb) lean ground beef (or veal, pork, or turkey)
- ½ tsp Himalayan salt
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp fish sauce
- 7-8 splashes Frank's Red Hot
- ½ large baked sweet potato*, cooled and cut into large bite size chunks
- 6 cups baby spinach leaves
- 2-3 tsp harissa, to serve
- Melt half the ghee in a large skillet set over medium-high heat and then throw in the chopped onion; cook until softened, fragrant and slightly colored, about 2 minutes.
- Then, crank up the heat and add the ground beef and salt. Break the meat into little pieces with a wooden spoon to help it cook faster and continue cooking until the meat is no longer pink, about 7 or 8 minutes. Throw in the ground pepper, garlic powder, fish sauce and Frank's Red Hot (if using) and stir.
- Transfer the cooked meat to a bowl and return the skillet to the heat source. Melt the remaining ghee and add the sweet potatoes to the skillet. Cook until nicely caramalized on each side, about 1 minute per side.
- Return the meat to the skillet, mix to combine with the sweet potatoes and then mound the spinach leaves on top. Kill the heat and cover with a large heat resistant bowl. Let sit for 5 minutes to allow the spinach to wilt.
- When the spinach has wilted enough to allow stirring, mix it in very delicately, until all the ingredients are well distributed.
- Serve piping hot with a few teaspoons of Harissa.