"Reclaiming Homemade in a Small Space"

Monday, April 2, 2012

Southwestern Sweet Potato Black Bean Cakes with Chipotle Cream

I have been trying for a while to get my family to eat more vegetarian meals.  We are definitely carnivores at our house and most of the time my husband, Matt, just tolerates the meatless dishes.  His tagline when I ask him what he thinks of a new vegetarian dish is "This would be great with Italian sausage!"   BUT when he took a bite of this one, he stopped and looked at me and said, "This is REALLY good!"  He doesn't miss the meat at all here.  Even my kids eat this...though they skip the spicy-hot chipotle cream.  *UPDATE: I used baked sweet potatoes and found they made things a bit liquid-y.  If that happens and the cakes seem a bit wet, add enough regular bread crumbs (I used about 1/2 c. to 3/4 c.) to bring the cakes together a bit more before you fry them up. 

Sweet Potato Cakes:
click here for printable recipe 
(makes 8 patties- serves 4 adults @ 2 patties a serving)
2  large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed in 1/2 inch cubes (about 6 cups)
1 (15 oz) can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 T. chili powder
1 t. cumin
3/4 t. salt
1 c. panko bread crumbs
Chipotle Cream:
1/2 c. sour cream
1 chipotle chili canned in adobo sauce

Steam the cubed potatoes in a steamer basket until fork tender.  (You can also bake two large baked sweet potatoes whole, steaming is just faster.  If you bake them, it will take at least an hour at 400 degrees.)

While the sweet potatoes are steaming, drain and rinse your black beans.  Set aside 3/4 c. of black beans whole.  Take the rest of the black beans and mash them with a fork in a large bowl. 
Add the steamed sweet potatoes and then mash them with the same fork!
Add the reserved black beans and mix well.
Add the chili powder, cumin and salt.

Mix well.  In a small, shallow dish, place 1/3 c. panko and set aside.  In a large skillet, heat 1 T. of vegetable oil over med. heat.  Now, it is time to form the patties.   This is different from making meat patties.  There isn't much fat to keep the mixture from sticking to your hands.  I suggest getting your hands wet between forming each patty.  After wetting your hands, scoop out about 1/2 c. of the mixture.
Form a patty with your wet hands, and gently place in the shallow dish of panko.

Since your hands are still wet, you don't want to stick them in a bunch of panko bread crumbs.  They'll end up with as much crumbs as the patty!  Take a spoon and push the bread crumbs around the sides of the patty.
Sprinkle some bread crumbs over the patty.  Use your spoon to distribute them.
You can either use you hands here or a spatula to transfer to your preheated skillet. (Repeat with each patty, adding panko to the bottom of the shallow dish each time.)

It is likely that you have gotten some panko on your hands at this point.  Just go rinse it off and keep them wet to form the next patty.  You'll need to work in two batches.  I was able to get four patties in the skillet at a time. Cook each patty until a deep golden brown (about 3 or 4 minutes) on each side.   Use care as you flip the patties, they will not firm up like a meat patty will.  You may also have to add more oil as you brown them.

While these are cooking, it is time to assemble the chipotle cream.  Take one chipotle chili that was packed in adobo sauce and chop it finely.  Add to 1/2 c. of sour cream and set aside.  (If you want the sauce extra spicy, add a t. of adobo sauce.) 
Once your sweet potato cakes are done, serve them up immediately with a schmear of  the chipotle cream.
A serving (2 cakes) is 351 calories and 12 g of fiber!!!!!