SurfGirl has teamed up with Irish surfer, cook and adventurer Finn Ní Fhaoláin to bring you some healthy recipes.
Mexican-ish Sweet Potato Pie
This is my go-to dish to feed friends where we’re just back from a surf trip. It’s cheap, tasty and feeds the masses.
• 5 skinny sweet potatoes or 2 massive ones
• 400g tinned mixed beans
• 400g tinned kidney beans
• 200g bag frozen veg (e.g. carrot, broccoli and pea mix)
• 1 red onion
• Olive oil, for frying
• 1 pack Mexican spice mix (or your own mix of 1tbsp sweet paprika/ pimenton, 1 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp crushed coriander seeds crushed, ½ tsp garlic powder, salt and pepper)
• Cheese of your choice to grate over the top (I like mature cheddar or a low-fat mozzarella)
Since this is protein, carbs and fat in one place, the only addition I usually go for is a little sweet chilli sauce on the side. For a vegan option, leave out the cheese and top with a ‘vegan parmesan’ of 1 cup (150g) salted cashews blitzed with 1tsp garlic powder.
1: Preheat your oven to 200°C.
2: Put the sweet potatoes on a roasting tray and bung it in the oven. That’s right, skin and all – don’t do anything to the potatoes! Let them bake till they’re soft – about 30-40 minutes or when you smack them with the back of a spoon they are soft and squishy,
3: Drain your tins of beans and rinse them in cold water. Set aside.
4: If you’re super organised, defrost your frozen veg the night before. If you’re not, blast them in the microwave or pour hot water over them till they defrost.
5 Finely chop your onion. Heat a frying pan on a medium-high heat. When it’s hot, lash in a bit of olive oil. Test it with a little piece of onion. When it sizzles, lash in the rest of the onion. Cook the onion till soft.
6: Chuck in the spices with the onion and sauté for a few minutes. In go the defrosted veggies and stir-fry for 5 or so minutes. Pop in the beans and cook for a few more minutes. Set to one side while you wait for your sweet potatoes.
7: When the sweet potatoes are soft, take them out of the oven – but keep the oven on. When they are cool enough to handle, shake them out of their skins into a big bowl. Mash using a potato masher with a little butter, or olive oil if you’re dairy free. Season to taste.
8: In a baking dish, spread out your veggie and bean mix. Then spoon the mashed sweet potato on top and smooth it over. Top with whatever obscene amount of cheese you like, or leave it out for a dairy-free option. Pop back in the oven till the cheese is melted and bubbly (10-15 minutes).
Poached eggs on toast with Green Things
A simple breakfast with a few greens is the perfect start to the day. Use asparagus in this dish if you’re feeling posh, but steamed spinach is my favourite.
• 4 slices Danish Brød
• 2 large handfuls baby leaf spinach or 1 handful asparagus spears
• 2-4 eggs – the freshest you can get your hands one. (The fresher the eggs you use, the better the white will stay together during poaching)
• Butter for the toast, or olive oil if you’re dairy free
• Salt and pepper to taste
• Squeeze of lemon for the greens
Butter the toast, pop on the spinach with a squeeze of lemon, slide the eggs on top and season with salt and pepper. It’s like a healthy Eggs Florentine. I serve the asparagus on the side with a drizzle of lemon, a knob of butter and a twist of black pepper.
1: Lash your bread in the toaster.
2: Trim your greens. When it’s asparagus, I trim the ends off diagonally and then cut the remaining stalks in two. I use a bamboo steamer over the pot that’s poaching the egg. If you don’t have one you can improvise with a metal colander and the pot’s lid!
3: Pour water into a small pot to a depth of 4–5cm and bring to a simmer – boiling is a bit too boisterous for these guys. While the water is heating up, you can put your steamer over it to ensure the asparagus is fully cooked by the time your eggs are done; if you’re using spinach you don’t need to put it in until later.
4: I’m a total wuss when it comes to poaching eggs so I crack them one at a time – oh so gently – into a little jug. Then, when the water is simmering, I swirl it around with a fork (because my chef teacher told me to) and carefully slide the eggs in. I like to leave my eggs in till the yolk is fairly firm – that’s up to 5 minutes. But you can decide for yourself – less for runny, more for solid. Once the eggs are in, pop the steamer back on top of the pot and turn the heat down a bit, as the steamer keeps the heat in.
For more like this, check out Finn’s World Cookbook. Get it from the Beach Boutique here.
Follow Finn’s daily adventures on www.finsfitfood.com or on instagram @finsfitfood.