We recently asked friends if they had any secret awesome recipes they’d like to share with us, and as soon as I was offered this Hungarian-style healthy sweet potato casserole I absolutely jumped at the chance!
It was so good, and happily Viola, the creator, allowed us to share it with the world. Thanks, Viola!
One of the reasons we love this recipe so much is that it’s a true ‘prep and relax’ recipe. Get a few things chopped and thrown in a casserole dish, and of it goes into the oven. Easy.
Your ‘working’ time is really very low, and a harder task for us was what to do with the time when the casserole was in the oven, with appetizing smells wafting through the home, daring us to open the oven early.
And what makes it Hungarian-style? A typical Hungarian casserole usually consists of parboiled then sliced potatoes covered with hard boiled eggs and mixed with sour cream. We follow this theme, although we cut out the parboiling part to save time and effort.
Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole
And what makes it so nutritious? Viola swaps out the potatoes for sweet potatoes – an incredibly healthy (and versatile) vegetable. Sweet potatoes have many nutritional benefits to recommend them, but today I’m going to focus on the beta-carotene side of things.
Current research shows beta-carotene to be an excellent source of vitamin A, and that getting beta-carotene naturally from foods is far better than taking it as a supplement.
And the best thing? Beta-carotene is fat-soluble, meaning it needs a little for your body to absorb it most effectively. That’s where the olive oil and sour cream comes in – they’ll help your body soak everything up. This dish really has it all.
And eggs? Eggs speak for themselves really – they’re an exceptionally nutritious food, and provide a huge amount of nutrients that are especially important to those who don’t eat meat. There is a dark side to eating eggs however, so please make sure to buy and support eggs from small, local sources wherever possible.
Tips and tricks
When hard boiling eggs (which you’ll do to make this Hungarian-style), it’s a great idea to use up the oldest eggs you have first. Not only does it leave you with fresher eggs for your other cooking, they’re much easier to peel, and will save you fiddling about when you should be putting your feet up and waiting for your sweet potato casserole.
You can save time with the sweet potatoes too. The traditional way to slice them is with a big knife, but you can also use a mandolin like this.
If you really want to speed things up, you could also throw the sweet potatoes into a food processor like this, and that’ll slice them up in seconds. Your sweet potato casserole will look slightly different than the original version (see picture) but will be just as tasty.
And finally – don’t forget to give the sour cream a good stir. Get a fork to it for thirty seconds and you’ll be left with a much ‘fluffier’ mixture which go wonderfully with the eggs and sweet potato.
An example of grated sweet potato instead of sliced
Hungarian-Style Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole
- Start hard-boiling the eggs. They’ll need about 12 minutes in boiling water. Once done, cool them in cold water.
- While that’s going on, peel and slice the sweet potatoes thinly.
- Finely chop the onions and garlic, and add with the sweet potato slices to a mixing bowl.
- Salt it to taste, it will take up quite a lot of salt.
- Peel and cut the hard boiled eggs to round slices. This is the easiest way.
- Give the sour cream a good stir to make it creamier.
- Take an oven proof casserole dish and layer half of the onion and sweet potato mix across the bottom.
- Layer all the slices of egg on top next.
- Sprinkle with a little more salt, and half the pepper and paprika.
- Put a layer of sour cream (in dollops) on the top of every egg slice.
- Layer over the rest of the sweet potato and onion mix.
- Spread out the remaining sour cream over the top and finish by adding the rest of the pepper and paprika.
- Add the lid (or cover with foil) and bake at 200°C/390°C for 40 mins.
- Take off the lid or the foil, then bake for another 30 mins.
- Done! Let cool slightly, and serve. It’s great alone or with a fresh salad on the side.