Just so you know, I’ve been accused of being too punny sometimes. (‘Nacho – not your – get it?? LOL! )
I definitely could’ve made a couple of puns about “going green for St. Patrick’s Day” and loaded you up with a few recipes for making veggie smoothies and/or feasting on leafy green salads.
But I’m not going to.
Because that would be too easy for me (to recommend greens for SPD – since I do it all the time!) and perhaps a bit hard on you (to swap out that green beer for some ‘waaaay tastier green drinks when it seems like everyone else is enjoying the former).
So I got to thinking – “Don’t be a buzzkill, Trish – there’s still going to be parties and party foods! (like chips, my nemesis!) so give the folks what they need.”
For some inspo, I did a quick internet search on Popular St. Paddy’s Day Food and it is very apparent that the Irish are known for their potatoes – mostly the starchy white variety. Potatoes weren’t native to Ireland but since they grew so well in that climate, it is likely that they became popular and synonymous with the Emerald Isle based on survival needs rather than anything else. It was much harder to grow other veggies, so Irish folks ate potatoes…and lots of them.
Potatoes are also quite popular on the interweb. At the time of this writing, potatoes are #1 on ranker.com. Unfortunately, they’re heavy on the starchy carbs with little protein, so they tend to spike up your blood sugar levels, then send them crashing down a couple hours later. Humans being humans we also tend towards the most unhealthy, processed versions of potato – chips and French fries – so it’s not exactly the best thing for you.
Many restaurants have been offering sweet potato fries as a ‘healthier option’, but truth be told – anything healthy that’s been deep fried in a vat of day-old vegetable oil is no longer healthy. Cooked in a different way (really – any. other. way.), sweet potato is awesome!
Sweet potato is a great source of beta-carotene (which I talk about here). They have fibre to help with blood sugar regulation. They also have anti-obesity, anti-tumour, and liver-protective properties. And this humble veg can help support the immune system. Sound too good to be true? See the research paper here – it’s interesting because it actually breaks down the beneficial effects observed in-lab as well as in living organisms. It also summarizes these qualities based on the specific parts of a sweet potato plant. Check out their illustrated charting here.
Since it is a more nutrient-dense switcheroo (that won’t send your blood sugar soaring!), I thought I’d make sweet potato as the star ingredient today rather than white potato. We are just using the tuber portion of the plant though ?.
And of course, of course I’m not recommending to deep fry anything, but choosing the healthier baked option. But – it’s still party food! And you can still celebrate St. Paddy’s to your heart’s content!
See? I got your back ? Party on!
Recipe: Sweet Potato Nachos
- 4 Sweet Potato
- 2 Tbsps Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 8 ozs Chicken Breast
- 4 Avocado (peeled and mashed)
- 1 Mango (peeled and diced)
- 1/2 cup Red Onion (finely diced)
- 4 Lime (juiced)
- 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
- Preheat oven to 375ºF (191ºC) and line 2 to 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Season your chicken breast with sea salt and black pepper to taste.
- Cut sweet potato into rounds as thinly as possible. Try to be consistent with how thin you slice them so they bake evenly.
- In a mixing bowl, toss the sweet potato rounds with olive oil and sea salt.
- Place the chicken and sweet potato rounds across the baking sheets in a single layer and bake for approximately 30 minutes in the oven. Flip the sweet potato rounds about halfway through, depending on the thickness or until golden brown. Remove from oven.
- While your chicken and sweet potato chips cook, assemble the guac by combining avocado, mango, red onion, lime juice and sea salt. Mix and mash with a fork until creamy. Store in fridge until ready to eat.
- Assemble a layer of baked sweet potato chips and top with shredded chicken and guac. Enjoy!
- For a vegetarian/vegan option, use a can of black beans instead of chicken.