Throughout my childhood, baked potatoes were the ultimate comfort food. At school, if you didn’t like what was on the menu (there were a lot of those days), you could choose to have a baked potato instead. My favourite filling was cheddar cheese and Coronation Chicken (making sure to add the cheese first to let it melt). Then I discovered sweet potatoes, and realised that not only are they comfort food, but they’re also pretty healthy too.
I came across a similar recipe to this one on an awesome blog that I recently discovered called Half Baked Harvest. We swapped around some ingredients based on what we had at home and created something spectacular. Our eyes were bigger than our stomachs, and in fact this was enough to last us for two meals – bonus! Obviously you can play around with the ingredients, add some spinach, or some roasted tomatoes, or pretty much do whaever you like with it.
2 sweet potatoes
6 boneless, skinless chicken thigh fillets
1 pepper (we used yellow, but can be red)
2 tbsp Cajun spice mix (paprika, salt, basil, garlic, onion, pepper, fennel, parsley, cinnamon, thyme, cayenne pepper)
Salt and pepper
Grated cheddar cheese
Grated mozzarella cheese
1. Preheat your oven to 180˚C. Wash the sweet potatoes and prick them several times with a fork. Place in the pre-heated oven for around 50 minutes, until tender.
2. Gently rub the whole pepper with olive oil, then place it in the oven (on the same baking tray if there’s space) for around 40-50 minutes, turning regularly until it has blackened all over.
3. Meanwhile, lay the chicken on a separate baking tray and coat with the Cajun spice mix. We used Herbie’s Cajun spice mix, which we bought in Sydney, but feel free to mix up your own using the ingredients listed above. Drizzle with olive oil and roast for around 20-25 minutes until cooked through but still juicy.
4. Once the pepper is blackened all over, take it out of the oven and place it straight into a plastic bag or a ziplock bag. This will cause it to sweat and make it really easy to remove the skin, once it has cooled down. Cut it into thin strips and put aside.
5. Once the chicken has been left to cool slightly, shred it with a couple of forks, or just use your hands. Combine this with the strips of roasted pepper and two thirds of the grated cheese.
6. Cut the baked sweet potatoes in half lengthways and scoop out part of the flesh, leaving a layer or flesh alongside the peel. You can keep the scooped out flesh for another meal the next day.
7. Fill the skins with the chicken mixture, top with more of the grated cheese and some salt and pepper to taste. Roast for around 10 minutes until nice and golden.
8. Enjoy with a side of leafy greens.