There’s a First for Everything

Sweet Potato, Red Onion & CotijaJust as we were tossing a hunk cotija cheese around for the first time, we also got tagged for the first time in the Luck & Resolutions circle by The Alchemist Chef. Very exciting! These answers were inspired by delicious eats.

Four things we wish for in 2009:
1. Continued discovery of new, wonderful foods and food cultures.

2. Travel, travel, travel.

3. Keep our minds open to even more foods we’ve never tried.

4. Create more signature recipes.

Four things we resolve to do in 2009:
1. Work on our photography skills!

2. Eat well without regret.

3. Open other people’s minds to things they’ve never tried.

4. Formulate a business plan…the plan is a secret, so this one will remain vague!

Now it’s our turn to tag three others and see what’s in store for them this year.  But now, back to that cotija…

Having never used cotija before, it was a pleasant surprise to taste just how great this salty, crumbly Mexican cheese pairs with sweet potatoes. It’s not a melty cheese, so don’t expect it to ooze between all these layers of goodness. Just prepare yourself for the full bodied flavor that will surely explode in your mouth. These are really great served with black beans or a light salad.

Sweet Potato, Red Onion and Cotija Stacks
4 large sweet potatoes
1/2 red onion, sliced
6 ounces cotija cheese
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Olive oil

1. Parboil sweet potatoes until they’re soft and easy to prick with a fork but not mushy. Approx. 15-30 minutes depending on size of potatoes.

2. Put potatoes in cold water to stop cooking. While potatoes cool, mash garlic, red pepper flakes and cilantro into cotija cheese until fully mixed.

3. Cut off ends of potatoes and slice into 1/2 inch rounds. Try to keep skins intact if possible.

4. On a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, place largest potato slice down, layer with a couple of onion slices, then cheese. Repeat. Each stack should have three slices of potato, ending with cheese on top. Sprinkle with cumin.

5. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 375 degrees or until cheese browns slightly.

6. Drizzle with olive oil and add more cilantro before serving. Salt to taste.

Click HERE for the printable recipe.


27 thoughts on “There’s a First for Everything

  1. Admirable resolutions, but I think your photography skills are already spot-on. I wish I were so talented with a camera.

    Indeed, I can literally taste your sweet potato stacks just by looking at that photo above. And my virtual taste buds say the dish is a winner.

  2. I love sweet potatoes too, I just need a really SHARPER knife, last time I was making sweet potato fries, I nearly cut myself!!! LOL Great that you’ve got some goals to shoot for, makes me think I need to write down some of my own…ok another item for the old To-Do List including getting a sharper knife so I can try this dish cause it looks amazing girl! :0

  3. Another well done dish, Duo. Love cheese, love sweet potatoes-how can I not try this?
    P.S.- Good luck on the business plan, I vow to finally get mine done this year as well.

  4. Great wishes and resolves! Like fatboybakes I may need a cojita replacement as I doubt I can find it here on the other side of the Atlantic. I’m always looking forward to things I have never tried before so looking forward to what you will share this year!

    p.s. this looks delicious!

  5. wow, looks scrumptious. hey, since we aren’t privvy to such exotic cheeses here in the far east, what would be a close replacement to cojita? (i presume its pronounced cohita?)

  6. Great resolutions there guys…I should adopt a couple of those two…another one for you; Continue faithfully commenting on Tenina’s website…Thanks Duo Dishes…and good luck with that secret business plan!

  7. Of course I like sweet potatoes *almost* as much as I like regular ol’ spuds. That recipe sounds great – I’ve never come across cojita (and probably not likely to in Ireland anytime soon…) but I imagine I could chuck some feta in there and still end up with something well tasty!

  8. I love cotija! I just just used it on corn on the cob with lime juice, chopped up cilantro and chili powder and this is going to sound weird, but I mixed it with a little mayo to make it spread nicely on the corn. That is what the Mexican places in Chicago do and I copied them. So yummy. I love the idea of using it with sweet potato-although I thought that was tomato bruschetta at first!

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