This is definitely one that tastes better than it looks.
Inspired by a recipe in Cooking Light, I modified this recipe from a side to a vegetarian main dish. The flavors are really unique and addictive and I almost always have all the ingredients on hand. And, if you microwave the sweet potatoes, it can come together in about fifteen minutes. Score!
West African Style Loaded Sweet Potatoes:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 medium onion, finely diced (about 1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes (garlic and onion are nice, but you can use plain, too)
1/3 cup water
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed (about 1/2 a 15 oz can)
fresh chopped cilantro
4 medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed clean
Prick potatoes with a knife or fork to allow steam to release and cook in microwave until tender (approx. 10 min, depending on size of potatoes). You can also bake them or do some combination of microwaving and baking since baking creates a much more tender, caramelized flavor (microwave until tender and then place in a 400 degree oven on a piece of foil so they don't drip and cause a huge mess and bake until they're really soft).
While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the sauce. In a large skillet over medium high heat, saute onion in olive oil until almost tender. Stir in ginger and garlic and saute for one more minute. Stir in coriander, cumin, cayenne and salt and pepper. Cook for about one more minute, stirring constantly. The spices should be very fragrant at this point. Add peanut butter and stir to melt. Add tomatoes, sugar and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to low. Cook over low heat until sauce thickens, a couple of minutes. Add garbanzo beans (did you know garbanzo beans and chick peas are the same thing, just different names?). Stir to combine and allow to heat through once again.
To serve, split open the sweet potato. Top with about 1/2 cup of sauce per potato and sprinkle chopped cilantro over top.