Basil Beef w/Sweet Potatoes

Alrighty...this is actually a misnomer...since I used a ground beef/turkey combo. Anyhoo...this is one of Sean's favorites in a long line of favorites. It's fairly simple to throw together and a complete meal served with (brown) rice. This was also the first time I used sweet potatoes. Normally, I use Japanese eggplants. It's my pseudo-Thai dish and it's supposed to be more on the sweet/savory side than purely savory.

The following is the ground beef(meat) version...you can also do it with thinly sliced beef.

Tan's Basil Beef

Ground beef & turkey (equal portions...roughly 1lb. of each)

Onion, diced

Red Pepper, sliced or diced

Carrots (not pictured), julienned, sliced, or diced

Sweet Potato (or Japanese Eggplant), small cubes

Garlic, smashed and minced

Ginger, minced (1 t.) or smashed large pieces (1 in. piece)

¼ cup Scallions, cut into 3 in. pieces (not pictured)

1 t. Sesame Oil

¾ t. Soy Sauce

1 t. Fish Sauce

3 T. Kecap Manis

⅓-¾ cup Basil, chiffonade

Olive Oil (or lighter oil if preferred)

Salt & Pepper

Microwave sweet potatoes until al dente. You want them nearly cooked through but not so cooked that they become mushy. Set aside.

Heat oil up in a large skillet or wok over high heat. Sauté onion, ginger, scallions, red pepper, carrots, & sweet potatoes until vegetables are soft but not mushy. Lightly season (as the soy sauce & kecap manis will add plenty of sodium later on) and add 1 t. garlic. Sauté for an additional 30 seconds. Remove from skillet/wok and set aside.

Add more oil to skillet/wok over high heat. Add ground beef & turkey, season, and brown. Drain any accumulated fat, if any (I use the leanest cuts so I don’t have extra fat that gets rendered). Add sesame oil, soy sauce, and kecap manis. Add 2 t. garlic and sauté for an additional 30 seconds.

Add vegetable mix. Add ½ of the basil. Let everything get happy for about 2 minutes. Taste for seasoning. At this point, the only additional seasoning you’ll want to add is the kecap manis since this dish is more on the sweet/savory side. Turn off heat and add remaining basil...adding more for a more pronounced basil flavor.

Serve on top of rice...with additional basil, if you dare.




I'm revisiting my old chili recipe...which is uber-healthy and totally satisfying. BUT...I've upped the ante and increased it's one-pot proteiny, legumey, veggie goodness and added...wait for it...


We love quinoa in this house. I've yet to post my quinoa salad recipe...but we absolutely *heart* this little powerhouse which the Incan's referred to as "the mother of all grains". Basically, this little bad boy's nutritional makeup makes it a complete protein. Once referred to as a grain...it counts spinach & swiss chard as it's cousins.

Anyhoo...try it, love it, eat it!

Tan's Chili Con Carne

Ground turkey/beef
Large Onion, chopped
6-7 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 T. Cumin
1 T. Chili Powder
2 t. Oregano

2 t. Adobo seasoning
1 t. Garlic Powder

1-2 bay leaves
1-2 Large can(s) diced tomatoes
Beer, 12oz. bottle
Small can of tomato sauce
Canned beans…however many you want (I typically add 4-6): kidney, black, pinto, etc.

1-2 cups Quinoa
1 bag Frozen Corn
Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Brown the turkey/beef in a few teaspoons of olive oil. Season w/salt & pepper. When thoroughly cooked, add onions. Allow to cook for several minutes. Add garlic and spices. Cook for about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add beans. Cook for a minute.

Add entire contents of canned tomatoes, beer, & tomato sauce. Add water to canned tomatoes & tomato sauce…swish and add to pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 30 minutes...or longer if you have the time. Add quinoa and simmer for another 30 minutes. 10 minutes prior to serving, add corn.

Serve w/plain Greek yogurt (or plain yogurt that’s been strained), chopped green onions, lowfat cheese, chopped jalapeno peppers, etc.