Sweet Potato Veggie Casserole

sweet potato casserole recipe

The hardest part about making recipes is that I am not very precise in my measurements. I take a more artistic approach to cooking than scientific, but when it comes to sharing your recipe so others can benefit, it helps to have some good old quant skills.

So when I wrote Easy Hiking Recipes, I often tested each recipe 5+ times to fine tune the measurements! My boyfriend was pretty happy to be the taste-tester for all of my experiments 🙂 This recipe hasn’t gone through that refining process, so I have to admit that the measurements are vague at best. But casseroles lend themselves well to ad-libbing, so perhaps you will end up with a very different and even yummier casserole than mine!

But for what it’s worth, here it is:

Sweet Potato Casserole

2 sweet potatoes, maybe 3 if they’re not huge, peeled and grated

1 onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 broccoli crown, or other vegetables, chopped

7 eggs

Cayenne pepper and salt to taste

Optional: cheese to sprinkle on top, or chopped sausage to cook and add to the mixture

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. (I just moved to Canada so I suppose I should be writing this in Celsius now, but try as I might I can’t seem to think in Centigrade. Hopefully it’ll kick in eventually). I chop the veggies as I cook, but to each his or her own. This is how I did it, though:

In a large pot, add a couple tablespoons of oil and the chopped garlic. Fry on medium until the oil starts to sizzle. In the meantime, chop the onion and add it to the pot.

Lower heat to medium-low and keep stirring the onion, while you peel and grate the sweet potato. Add the potato to the pot as you grate. (I’m not your mom so sorry for the nagging, but be VERY careful of your fingers as you grate! I’ve seen too many kitchen battle scars in my life not to add that caveat, sorry again. I leave a 2″ nubbin of sweet potato for each one I grate. You can chop up the nubbins afterward and throw them in the pot too).

Keep stirring the pot, and chop the broccoli, and cooked sausage if you so desire. Add that to the pot and stir in the salt and pepper to taste.

Grease a 9×13″ pan (who knows what that is in centimeters?) and pour in the semi-cooked concoction.

Beat the eggs and pour it on top, shaking the pan around to get it dispersed evenly. Sprinkle cheese on top if you’d like.

Bake for 22 minutes, or until the egg seems nice and cooked. Take out and cool!

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Garlicky Basil Hummus

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I love hummus! It’s the perfect dip for chips or raw veggies. It’s so easy and cheap to make, compared to the store-bought variety. And you can ad-lib to make your own flavor combinations that taste way better! Here’s one simple version that tastes great if you like garlic. But be warned: you will have garlic breath after eating this!

Ingredients

1 15-oz. cans of chickpeas (I like Eden Organic variety)

¼ cup lemon juice

¼ cup tahini

5 garlic cloves, minced

¼ cup fresh basil, minced

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 pinch cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients in a blender and whir away until smooth. Add water if needed.

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cover-Easy-Hiking-RecipesAnd check out my e-book Easy Hiking Recipes for more flavor ideas to spice up your hummus and other hiking food!

Recipe: Chinese Tea Eggs

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These cute little marbled eggs are a great mid-morning snack. The addition of tea and spices adds some excitement to otherwise plain boiled eggs.

Ingredients

6-12 eggs

3 heaping tablespoons of loose leaf Chai tea (plain black tea works as well, but I like the spices in Chai tea)

Additional optional ingredients:

2 tablespoons soy sauce

4 star anise

1 cinnamon stick

1 tablespoon orange or lemon zest

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

Place eggs in a pot and add enough water so that they’re entirely covered. Bring to a boil on medium-high, but be careful not to bring the water to a boil too quickly, or the eggs will crack and start leaking. Once the water reaches a boil, turn it to low and cover the pot. Simmer for 10 minutes, then remove the eggs from the burner.

Fish the eggs out with a spoon. Using the back of the spoon, tap them lightly to crack them all over. Don’t whack them so hard that the shells fall off, but hit them enough so that distinct cracks are visible. Place the eggs back in the pot of hot water, along with the tea and other optional ingredients.

Cover and simmer for one hour. Again, fish the eggs out with a spoon. I refrigerate them in their shells, but for hiking trips I peel them beforehand to save time.

You can also season them with a little salt or soy sauce. Save a few packets of salt or soy sauce the next time you order food to go, or use a refillable mini soy sauce bottle.

Pack the shelled eggs in a plastic bag or food container. Bring a thermos of black tea to go with your tea eggs, and you’re set for tea time on the mountain top!

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Tea time! Tea eggs, homemade almond milk Chai, and sesame honey glazed roasted almonds (check out my almond recipe here).

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cover-Easy-Hiking-RecipesAnd now a word from your sponsor:

Buy my e-book Easy Hiking Recipes for more recipes like this!

Fruit-Infused Water

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While I’m on the subject of water, this is another simple way to add a little flavor to your water bottle. Simply chop up some fruit, add it to a pitcher with some water, and refrigerate it overnight! In the morning, strain out the fruit and pour the water into your bottle.

The resulting infusion will have a pleasant sweetness and fruity flavor, which will encourage you to drink more water and stay hydrated – particularly important during these hot summer months. It’ll also be more hydrating than pure juice, since juice is essentially a food suspended in water.

Chop the fruits well to allow a lot of surface area for the juice to infuse the water. If you’re making a fruit salad for your day hike the next day, it’ll be super easy, since you’re already chopping up fruit 🙂 In the photo above, I also added a teabag of DoMatcha’s Organic Tencha Green to the pitcher, and cold-brewed the tea along with the fruit overnight.

Fruits that infuse well include:

  • Apricots
  • Berries – Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries
  • Kiwis
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Lychee
  • Mangoes
  • Melon – watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, etc.
  • Oranges
  • Peaches
  • Pineapple

You can also add fresh mint or other herbs. Bruise them first by rolling them in your hands or smooshing them on a plate with the back of a spoon, to break up the leaf cells and release their fragrant oils.

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Check out more easy recipes in my Kindle ebook Easy Hiking Recipes.

Coconut Granola Breakfast Squares

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Sometimes I just can’t be bothered to make breakfast in the morning when I’m getting ready for a hike. These tasty little squares are like granola, but softer. They’re  a great cereal option if you’re camping or just in a hurry. Eat them on their own, or put a couple in a bowl with a splash of milk. I like to put three squares in a bowl with some soymilk, and heat it up for a few seconds for “fancy” oatmeal.

In this recipe I use coconut oil, my new favorite seasoning 🙂 Coconut oil lends a light tropical essence of coconut to your cooking and is a source of healthy saturated fats and may contain antiviral properties. But mostly, it just tasted delicious! The oil is solid at room temperature, so you must melt it before mixing it in with the oats. You can also halve this recipe to make a smaller batch.

Ingredients

2 cups rolled oats

¼ cup organic virgin coconut oil

¾ cup peanut butter

¼ cup honey

½ cup shredded coconut

¼ cup chopped nuts

¼ cup raisins

1 teaspoon vanilla

¼ cup water

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9”x9” baking pan with parchment paper or foil, all the way up the edges.

In a small pot, heat the peanut butter, honey, vanilla, water, and coconut oil on low heat until thoroughly mixed.

In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients together. Whisk in the peanut butter concoction. The dough should be sticky but a bit crumbly still. Add a little extra water if the dough is too dry to mostly stick together.

Press the mixture firmly into the pan with the back of a spoon. Bake for 40 minutes, then cool completely. Remove from the pan, and peel off the foil. Slice carefully into squares – it’s a bit crumbly. Enjoy!

It’s Alive!

It’s alive! You can now check out my book Easy Hiking Recipes: Simple Meal Ideas for Day Hikes and Other Outdoor Adventures on Amazon.

Click here to check it out.

EasyHikingRecipes

If you don’t have a Kindle, you can still read the book using the free Kindle apps:

Kindle app for iPhone, iPad, and Macs: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/kindle/id302584613?mt=8

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