Using what you have to hand

First and foremost, I'm a cook. I cook all day, every day, never tiring of new recipes, old faves and interesting ideas. My garden is a very slow work in progress at present. I have a few small bok choi that despite being shorn off at ground level by the grasshoppers, have now bounced back. The bed is now netted but it's certainly not enough for a meal yet! (squint to see these little miracles.)

So, in the mean time, I have reverted to one of my favourite standbys. Sweet Potato leaves.

The vine is prolific, needing to be cut back most weeks, so it doesn't take over the garden. As a result, I have an endless supply of greens that I use as a cooked spinach replacement. My latest was a quick vegetable curry. I tried a similar curry in Kenya a number of years ago and it has always lived on in my food memories.

Flexibility is the key during these current times.

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  • Does anyone have the type of sweet potato that is grown primarily for its leaves?

    Such a plant exists. A real climber. Puts more energy into leaf growth.

    Did you know the sweet potato leaf is healthier than the root?

    I think the leaves taste better than Kankong which seems bland to me--although the hollow stems are a texture surprise.

    Stir fried sweet potato leaves or kangkong is sort of the national dish of Malaysia. You cook it with Belacan -- fermented shrimp paste. It tastes delicious but smells awful! You can also add dried shrimp (My go to RECIPE).

    • This was an old sweet potato that was shoved in the ground a few years back and produced some fruit but then died back. It’s now popped up close by but not in the same bed. I agree that it’s fairly bland but gives us a good supply of alternate greens. Last night it was sweet potato leaf pakoras. I’ve enjoyed stir fried or morning glory in Chiang Mai so perhaps that may be next on the list. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Great stuff Fiona. I use a heck of a lot of sweet potato leaves in pesto. 

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