Why have I never shared these roasted 'taters' with you guys? These are so very easy and savory ... not your usual smushed sweet potatoes and not super crisp and fatty sweet potato fries ... instead, thick half rounds with a bit of olive oil to keep the crisp outsides moist and to allow for crunchy crisp nuggets of garlic, thyme, and red pepper to flavour them.
I usually have them with a roast of pork or beef tenderloin ... tonight it's pork tenderloin with some chunky cinnamon applesauce. We've also got some wilted kale in a soft garlic and butter sauce ... a perfect late fall meal. I hope you're also cashing in on all these great fall fruits and vegetables to make up for the other seasonal decadence that is on the dessert plates ... wink, wink!
Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Serves: 4 hungry folks
Toss together in a deep bowl:
4 large sweet potatoes, peeled, halved length-wise and sliced into half-inch half rounds
½ tsp kosher salt
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp. red pepper flakes
⅓ c. fresh thyme leaves, chopped
3 tbsp. olive oil
Let the mixture rest for one hour.
Pre-heat oven to 400°F.
Spray a rimmed cookie sheet with oven spray and arrange the potatoes and all the juices and herbs in one layer.
Roast on upper level rack for twenty minutes and then turn them.
Continue roasting until they are tender, but NOT mushy.
Turn them onto a warm platter and serve … or set aside uncovered and re-heat when the rest of the meal is ready. These can easily be made ahead and zapped in the microwave to piping hot without hurting the flavour or consistency.
Pork Tenderloin on a Bed of Wilted Kale
oven spray for the roasting pan
1 ½ lb. pork tenderloin
crushed thyme leaves
4 slices bacon
4 garlic cloves, sliced into slivers
1 large bunch kale, washed and spines trimmed from leaves, leaves sliced into ribbons
two large pinches red pepper flakes
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. water
1 tsp. cider vinegar
Making the Dish:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Place racks at the middle and upper levels.
2. Spray an oblong roasting pan with oven spray and lay the tenderloin in.
3. Stab it a few times deeply and insert slivers of garlic (2 cloves worth) in along the blade of the knife so that the garlic is right down in the loin.
4. Sprinkle on the black pepper and crushed thyme leaves.
5. Lay the bacon strips over the tenderloin so that it is completely covered.
6. Roast in a preheated oven on the middle rack for about 50 minutes and then slice in to check for a slightly pink center.
7. Remove and slice into ¾-inch slabs. Arrange the roast over the top of a bed of wilted kale.
8. Serve with a spiced applesauce on the side.
1. Place a deep fry pan over medium heat and add olive oil, 2 cloves worth of sliced garlic, and red pepper flakes. Sauté just until the garlic starts to brown up on the edges.
2. Quickly add the washed and ribboned kale, tossing to distribute the garlic and red pepper. Continue to toss until the kale begins to wilt.
3. Add the water and cider vinegar, toss and cover, reduce the heat just a bit and let the kale finish wilting while you slice the pork.
4. Plate the kale and arrange the sliced pork atop, crumbling the bacon around the sides.
5. When the kale is served, add some of the crumbled bacn and mix it in for a nice crunch factor.