Did someone say marathon? As the colder weather sets in, marathons seem to be the go-to event … Not sure which one you’re talking about, but I was thinking of movie marathons, netflix, anime and football screenings at mine.
Yes, ideally you would be doing the running, the footy or batting that cricket ball yourself… but that said, we all like to take the spectators seat now and again!
Load up the lighter way with this delicious loaded, golden spud – it’s oozing with nutritious goodness and 110% of the yum! Even better, one serve of these loaded sweet potatoes are packed with ALL of your day’s veggies – and you didn’t even have to eat a salad! That’s definitely a better deal than the zero-or-one serves from your typical pie or slider.
This is a term thrown around when we talk about eating plenty of carb-rich foods typically before a major athletic event. Why carbs? Carbs are the main fuel source of your muscles for high-power explosive physical activity, whereas fats are burnt off afterwards for longer events.
For a movie marathon, you probably won’t need to do any carb-loading, but for a different reason it is just as important to choose sustaining and satisfying foods that won’t leave you grazing on chips and crackers from the opening scene to the end of the credits. Making event-appropriate healthy choices will also prevent you bursting your overall kilojoule intake for the day!
Despite first impressions, sweet potatoes aren’t as carby as you think – one small potato (200g) has a similar amount of carbs as 2 slices of bread or half a cup of rice. Sounds pretty decent, right? Go on, tuck into these baked sweet potatoes to last you a couple of Lord of the Rings movies without overdoing the carbs.
Make your marathons active!
Take simple stretch breaks every half-hour (it doesn’t have to be boot camp-style!). You can even stand for 5-10 minutes of the show before sit back into the sofa. All of this is to get your muscles active and blood pumping – activated muscles burn up more energy than couch potato ones! (and I think we’ve got enough potatoes on this page already!)
For more sweet potato recipes, check out:
Costs: $11.85 ($2.95 per serve)
Cooking time: 20 minutes
- 4 small golden sweet potatoes (approx. 200g each)
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium brown onion, finely diced
- 1 tbsp curry powder (see Notes)
- 2 small tomatoes, diced
- 400g canned lentils
- 1 cup grated cheese (see Notes)
- 1 small avocado, ripened and diced
- Fresh parsley, to serve (optional)
Let’s get cooking!
- Brush or scrub sweet potatoes with a damp tea towel to remove any dirt. Place on a microwavable dish and cover loosely with cling wrap and microwave on high for 10 minutes or until soft when pierced with a fork. Stand to cool slightly until safe to handle.
- Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and stir until soft. Add curry powder, tomatoes and lentils, and cook on low heat until heated through and tomatoes are soft. Set aside and cover to keep warm.
- Cut a shallow slit down the length of the potatoes (not all the way through!), leaving the ends uncut. Gently pry open the slit and scoop out enough of the flesh to leave a 1-1.5 cm-thick shell.
- Mix sweet potato flesh with lentils mixture and season with black pepper. Spoon the filling back into the potato shells. Top with avocado, cheese and parsley to serve.
- You can bake the sweet potatoes instead of microwaving them – preheat the oven to 180°C and bake on a lined baking tray for 40-45 mins or until soft. Stand to cool slightly on the tray before splitting.
- For a “melted-cheese” finish, preheat the oven to 200°C. Hold off on the parsley and bake the assembled sweet potatoes for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Top with parsley once grilled and serve.
- I used Ayam Curry Powder which is a Malaysian-style curry powder, but I find that it works wonders for Indian cuisines too! Choose a brand that doesn’t have any added flavourings, additives or salt – it should just be dried spices. To be sure, always check the ingredients list.
- Choose reduced fat varieties of cheese, if available. I used mozzarella cheese but parmesan, tasty or cheddar work well too. Try dolloping low-fat cottage cheese or ricotta cheese instead, or even greek yoghurt for a flavour change!
- Meat-lovers – like my other recipes, feel free to swap out half or all of the lentils with lean mince (beef or lamb would work nicely)! Simply substitute the lentils and cook until browned.
One serve provides a whopping 6.5 serves of veggies! (woah!)
|Total fat (g)||18.1|
|– Saturated fat (g)||6.4|
|– Sugars (g)||16.6|
Recipe inspiration from the Australian Healthy Food Guide.