If there was one word to describe my life right now it would be “overwhelming”. Nearly four months ago it seemed like a good idea to order a large quantity of new self-build furniture to grab a seventy-per-cent-off deal at Laura Ashley. In retrospect, an odd choice given that DIY is not our forte. Since delivery, half our bedroom space has been relinquished to twenty-two enormous and very intimidating boxes.
Now (subject to us finding a competent joiner!), they’re not going to be gathering dust for much longer. The re-vamp of our living/bedroom space, which has been overdue for the past ten years has finally begun and we, with all our clothes and personal possessions, have been displaced throughout the rest of the house whist the work is carried out. I hate the disruption, but at least the financial liability of a large, cold Edwardian property that’s a nightmare to heat and maintain is offset by having space! Perhaps we should have considered moving when my two daughters flew the nest, but the prospect of a new owner coming in and cutting down the trees and destroying the habitat of numerous squirrels and birds that have made our garden their home, prevents us. So given that we feel we have to stay, we're stuck with the ongoing commitment and upheaval of one costly home improvement after another.
With all the chaos going on around me, what I don’t have too much time for is cooking, food shopping and devising new recipes for this blog! Hence, for the next few weeks, I’ll be in the same boat as most people who prefer to eat ‘fast’ food. However, in my world, fast food can never mean processed, ready-made or take-aways. Simplicity is key to making healthy meals that are quick and easy to get to the table, which also means me relying heavily on my family’s co-operation and team work. My husband John is my brilliant commis chef that does most of the chopping and slicing, whilst Sarah is a dab-hand at making perfect fried eggs for this comforting Sweet Potato Hash With Crispy Fried Eggs.
A delicious, nutritious, inexpensive meal that really works, it is one of my all-time favourites for an uncomplicated supper.
Sweet Potato Hash With Crispy Fried Eggs (V) (Serves 3)
750g organic sweet potatoes, cut into small (about 2cm) cubes
1 small organic Savoy cabbage, stem and stalks removed and thinly sliced
3 tbsp olive oil
1 organic red onion, finely chopped
1 dsp cumin seeds
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 organic medium eggs
Large handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
Boil a kettle of water. Put the boiling water into the bottom pan of a steamer and the sweet potato cubes in the top of the steamer.
Steam the sweet potato cubes with the pan lid on for about 10 minutes, until almost tender. Use a draining spoon to scoop the potato cubes out of the steamer into a large bowl. Season well with sea salt and black pepper and add the cumin seeds, being careful not to break the potato cubes up. Set aside.
Add the cabbage to the steamer, put the lid back on and cook for 2 minutes until tender. Tip the cooked cabbage into a separate bowl. Season with a little sea salt and a good grinding of black pepper.
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large deep frying pan over a moderate heat and fry the onion for 3 minutes or until just softened. Turn the heat up to medium/high, add half the butter and the sweet potatoes and fry, stirring frequently, until the potatoes and onions start to caramelise and turn golden brown.
Add the cabbage and the rest of the butter to the sweet potato mixture and continue frying, stirring from time to time, whilst you simultaneously cook the eggs.
Take a second large frying pan and heat the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil until the surface seems to slightly shimmer. Crack each egg into a small bowl or cup then carefully pour into the hot oil. After 1 minute reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook until underneath the whites of the eggs are crispy and golden.
While the yolks are still runny, use a fish slice to transfer the eggs to a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain off any excess oil.
Pile the sweet potato hash on to three warmed plates and gently place two fried eggs on top of each. Season the eggs with a little sea salt and black pepper then scatter over the chopped parsley to serve.
Sweet potatoes are naturally sweet-tasting but their natural sugars are slowly released into the bloodstream, helping to ensure a balanced and regular source of energy, without the blood sugar spikes linked to fatigue and weight gain.
If the eggs stick together in the frying pan, use a non-stick flat ended spatula to 'cut' and separate them. Do not try to dowse the egg yolks in hot oil - they should be cooked to perfection (soft and runny) if you leave the eggs alone in the frying pan until the edges of the whites are a lacey, crisp and golden.
Wear a bibbed apron to fry the eggs - they can spit and splutter in hot oil!
Carbohydrates 58g Protein 23g - per serving