There’s a cafe near my place (Mate Latte) that makes a decadent spinach, ricotta and sweet potato pie. Theirs is baked in a rich, buttery crust, which I love, but I wanted something a little more baby-friendly. Tiny tummies can fill up quickly on empty calories so I ditched the pastry and incorporated their 3 key ingredients into a veggie ‘shepherdless’ pie.
Serves a family of 4, with left overs
- 3 medium sweet potatoes, washed and cut into rounds
- 2 x 10 ounce bags of spinach, washed, stemmed and chopped
- 1 large leek, white and light green parts only, chopped
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)
- 1 x 475 gram container of ricotta cheese
- 1 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme
- nutmeg to taste
- fresh cracked pepper
- You’ll also need a 2.3 litre or 12.5 quart baking dish (I didn’t have one handy so I made 2 smaller dishes)
- Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit.
- Steam sweet potato rounds until they pierce easily with a fork and the skins start to separate slightly. Let cool then slip skins off. Conserve water from steaming.
- While sweet potato is steaming, heat olive oil over medium heat and sauté the leeks until soft and translucent. add the chopped spinach and season with nutmeg and fresh cracked pepper to taste. Cook until the spinach has wilted then set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ricotta and fresh thyme then set aside.
- In a large bowl or pot, use a potato masher to mash the sweet potato until smooth. Add the butter, if using, and a few tablespoons of the reserved potato water to help smooth things out. Season with fresh cracked pepper and set aside.
- In a baking dish, layer the spinach mixture, followed by the ricotta and finally the sweet potato mash. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, then set the oven to broil for 2 minutes to lightly brown the top. Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
This is a fun meal to make that’s colourful and tasty. It yields a lot of food so our small family of three got to enjoy it one day for dinner and the next day for lunch. It’s good for you too. This dish is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C, folate and iron. It’s also high in protein and fiber plus it’s a source of calcium.