You can definitely feel Autumn in Canberra today and there is a real sense that Winter is on its way. The skies are gloomy, everyone is wearing warmer darker clothes and I wanted to stay under the doona (duvet or whatever you call it if you aren’t in Australia) this morning.
Wet days are always tricky with the dogs. They so love their morning walks and look at me as if I am completely heartless for not taking them out. But then when we head out the front door, the pups are not very keen at all. I got moving with our breakfasts which we normally have after our walk. Then by the time we had all eaten, the rain had eased so I thought we would head out. Both Benji and Baxter seemed ok with the light smattering of rain but as we walked along the path it started to pick up.
Benji would probably be quite happy to keep walking , getting wet, but you can see the cogs whirring in Baxter’s head. He starts looking back down the path towards home and slows down. If it gets wet enough like it did today he just turns around and starts heading for home. So we didn’t get very far on our walk but at least the pups got some fresh air.
And I find on days when I don’t get that walk I am a bit out of sorts. The walk is like a reset on my mind. It is a new day and the walk helps clear my head and get my thoughts in order. Even on grey days like today there is still beauty to see in nature and the wet weather creates a lovely silence as people stay indoors.
Plus on days like this I feel like eating gorgeous warming casseroles and cooking doesn’t feel like a chore at all. It is perfect nesting weather. I would probably get sick of it if I lived in a wet place (and did when I lived in Bristol) but Canberra is a fairly dry and rain is not a burden.
This Spiced Up Sweet Potato Turkey Skillet is perfect for eating on days like these. I have adapted it from this sweet potato turkey skillet by Olivia from Primavera Kitchen. Olivia’s recipe is a great family recipe but I wanted a bit more spice in mine. I have added in some chipotle in adobe to add a bit more of a smoky chilli flavour. If your family isn’t in to spice, then I would recommend giving Olivia’s recipe a try.
I also had some pecorino cheese that needed using up so I switched out the mozzarella for the pecorino. I have since made my recipe with mozzarella and the pecorino is definitely a better match for the chipotle in adobo. The mozzarella was overpowered, whereas the bite of the pecorino cut through the chipotle. Parmesan would work just as well if that is what you have.
A quick tip on the chipotle in adobo when cooking for one. Because the tin you buy this in is quite big you are unlikely to use it quickly enough unless you are on a chipotle in adobo binge. What I do is mince it all up in my food processor and then use an ice cube tray to keep it in the freezer. I put a teaspoon of the minced up chilli in each ice cube spot. I have found it keeps very well when you do this and it is such a small amount there is no need to defrost before you start cooking with it.
This recipe has the benefit of being a one pot meal which you know I love – you do need to use a pan that is both stove and oven proof though. I can’t recommend enough having at least one of these in the kitchen. The sweet potato has me thinking this would be good for my Dad who has diabetes – sweet potato is a much better pick than potatoes in terms of their glycaemic index.
Preparation time is about 10 minutes – there is a bit of chopping and peeling to do and you want to chop everything finely and the same size to get even cooking. Cook time is about 30 minutes.
- 1/2 tbs of olive oil or vegetable oil
- 130g of turkey breast mince (ground turkey)
- 1/2 tsp of minced garlic (equal to 1/2 a clove)
- 1/4 of a brown onion, diced
- 1/4 of a yellow pepper, diced
- 1/2 a cup of sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 1 tsp of chipotle in adobo, minced
- 1/4 cup of pecorino or parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tbs of light sour cream (optional)
- 1 spring onion, sliced for garnish
- Put the oven on to 180 C (355 F) - check how hot your oven proof dish can go and adjust accordingly.
- In an oven proof pan or skillet heat the olive oil on a medium high heat.
- Once the oil is hot, add the turkey mince and garlic and cook for about 5-8 minutes until turkey is browned, stir to make sure it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Add the onions and pepper and cook until onions start to brown, about 4-5 minutes.
- Add the sweet potato and chipotle in adobo to the pan along with about 2 tbs of water.
- Season to taste.
- Cover the pan and cook until the sweet potato is tender, about 8 minutes.
- Once the sweet potato is cooked sprinkle with the cheese and pop in to the oven.
- Cook in the oven until the cheese is melted, about 5 minute but keep an eye on the dish.
- Once the cheese is melted, remove from oven and stir in sour cream.
- Garnish with spring onion.