Hey and welcome back! I am super excited to share something new with you this week. I hope your taste buds are ready for this, because the flavor in the dish is out of this world.
This week I have decided to try something new and see what you think of it. I have taken a dish from the popular Food Network show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and made it my own. This week I bring you Sweet Potato Lasagna!
As I am sure you know by now, I love all things food, but there are times I need inspiration for new dishes. While watching Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives I saw the recipe I am going to share with you today and thought I have to try this and share it with you.
For my version of this recipe, you will need:
• 1 pound ground Italian sausage
• 1 pound ground beef (I used 97% lean)
• 4-5 sweet potatoes
• 2 small containers feta cheese
• 10-12 oz cream cheese
• ¾ cup sour cream (add more if your heart desires)
• Some semi-dried basil
• Dried thyme
• Dried oregano
• 4 cloves of garlic
• 1 medium yellow onion
• 2 big cans of roasted red tomatoes
• A big can of tomato paste
• Red wine vinegar
• Italian seasoning
• 1-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
• Some cooking spray
I know that seems like a lot of ingredients but it’s not as bad as it sounds, so let’s get started. In a small pot dump in the canned tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 cloves of garlic sliced, red wine vinegar, Italian seasoning, and about 1-1 ½ cups of water. Stir and bring to a simmer.
Then reduce the heat to low and let the sauce continue to simmer for about 30 minutes. Once the sauce has cooked, I used an immersion blender to make the sauce smooth.
While the sauce is cooking for that 30 minutes put your ground meats in another pot to begin cooking and dice the onion. Throw the onions in with the meat and continue cooking for about 8 minutes. Once the sauce is finished and smooth add the meat and onions mixture together and just like that you made sauce!!
Next, you want to preheat the oven to 375 degrees and prepare the cheese filling. In a bowl combine the feta cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, basil, oregano, thyme, and the other few cloves of garlic minced. Side note: the semi-dried basic comes in little cups in the produce section and the flavor is amazing.
Now, it’s time to cut the sweet potatoes extremely thin. For this step, I used a mandolin but if you don’t have one you can try to slice the sweet potatoes as thin as you can. I didn’t peel the sweet potatoes and this turned out great.
Now it’s time to put this thing together. Spray your dish with cooking spray and then begin laying down the slices of sweet potato being sure to slightly overlap the edges. Spread some of the meat sauce on top of the potatoes and then put some of the cheese filling on top of that — now repeat! Complete this until everything is gone. I ended with the cheese filling and then put the shredded mozzarella on top and I am telling you it was divine! Bake for an hour to an hour and 15 minutes — keep an eye toward the end to make sure it’s not burning on the top. Slice and enjoy!
When I talked to Clay Elkins and Annie Slonaker at the Village Wine shop about what kind of wine would pair best with this dish, here is what they had to say:
“I’m a big fan of the line of thought about ‘what grows together goes together’ so this really takes me to Italy. One of my favorite producers the Italian Piedmont is Isole e Olena. They grow a wide range of grapes from Syrah to Cabernet and Chardonnay and have really found a way to strike the perfect balance between tradition and innovation. If you prefer a nice red wine I’d stick to their Chianti Classico, which is primarily Sangiovese (by law) and would go great with the fire-roasted tomatoes. Now if you prefer a nice white wine, go for the Isole e Olena Chardonnay — yes, an Italian Chardonnay! Just don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.”
There are so many things you could do to this to make it your own. I added sliced black olives in my sauce because we like olives. You could omit the meat and add in portabella mushrooms instead since they are meaty or you could swap out the sausage and ground beef for ground chicken or turkey. This dish was so good and the feta and basil together gave it real light, fresh touch.
I hope you and your family enjoy this and as always, I am sending love from my kitchen to yours!
Lindsey lives in White Sulphur Springs with her wife Candi and their nephew Austin. By day Lindsey is a Service Coordinator at Seneca Health Services in the IDD/Waiver program. Lindsey enjoys spending time with family and friends, entertaining when possible but most importantly she loves cooking from the heart.