About a month ago, we had some friends come to visit, and they brought us a 40lb. box of sweet potatoes. For those of you that don’t know, this is the best. gift. EVER.
The first time they gifted us sweet potatoes, both me and Husband said, “gee, thanks,” then looked at each other like, “what in the hell are we going to do with 40 lbs. of sweet potatoes??” (This was our pre-paleo days, so we had no idea about the true value of this gift. Come to think of it, it might have helped us go paleo?)
We discovered a few things over the following months. First, the sweet potatoes were cured, which meant they would last months and months without going bad. Magical produce! Amazing! Second, we discovered that sweet potatoes are good for pretty much any meal. Make a sweet potato hash like this one, top it with eggs, and you’ve got breakfast. Cube it along with some onions and bake it with a pork tenderloin, and you’ve got dinner.
The second time we obtained the 40lb. box of sweet potatoes, we had gone to visit them in Kinston, NC, where they live, and the sweet potatoes are grown. We went to her dad’s house, where he had boxes and boxes of sweet potatoes. I have no idea what someone could do with all of those sweet potatoes. I was overwhelmed with my single box. We bought a box from him, brought it home, and finished it in probably 1/4th of the amount of time it took us to go through the first one.
When they came to visit last month, we were sitting around the living room talking, and they mentioned nonchalantly that they had to run to the car to go get our sweet potatoes. I shrieked, “ohmygodyoubroughtussweetpotatoes?!?!?!”, jumped out of my seat, and threw my arms around her. I think this is what Husband refers to when he says sometimes I have “inappropriate levels of excitement” about things.
These potatoes were harvested in the fall, so their lifespan is on a downward slope. I’m cooking and eating as fast as I can, and periodically stopping to pull the sprouts off the potatoes in the box in the kitchen.
But when you’re eating that many sweet potatoes, it can get…well…sweet. Sometimes I get sick of the sweetness of the sweet potatoes, and I want something a little spicy to counter it. (I know, don’t eat a sweet potato. But that’s too easy, and then we wouldn’t have this recipe, now would we?)
Buffalo chicken to the rescue! These flavors were the perfect combo. I make my own mayo, and you’ll want to make sure your hot sauce doesn’t have any added sugar or other crap in it. My favorite, Trader Joe’s Jalapeno Hot Sauce, is literally just peppers, vinegar, and salt, which is all you need, and Frank’s Red Hot Original is also a great option.
Also, if you have a stand mixer, try the chicken trick. My hand always cramps up when I try to shred chicken with a pair of forks, but that little nugget of knowledge changed my life. Just cut it up into big chunks, throw it in, turn it on low, and watch the chicken shred before your very eyes!
- Preheat the oven to 405°
- Puncture the sweet potatoes all over using a sharp knife, then wrap in foil.
- Place on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and bake for 1 hr.
- While that's baking, shred the cooked chicken breasts. (If you have a KitchenAid mixer, try cutting it into chunks and using the paddle attachment on a slow speed!)
- In a large bowl, combine the shredded chicken, mayo, hot sauce, diced onion, and chives and stir to combine.
- Remove potatoes from the oven and allow to cool for 10 mins or so.
- Slice lengthwise, and spoon the chicken salad into the potato.
- Top with fresh chives and serve.