What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

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What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

Postby Apparently Anonymous » Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:28 pm UTC

So I'm decent at cooking, but not very good at coming up with combinations of foods, i.e. finding out which side dishes go well with a main dish or which main dish would go well with a side dish.

Lately, for instance, I've been crazy about sweet potatoes, in the form of fries/wedges or oven-baked/hasselback style, but I don't know what to serve with it. This often leads to me simply making sweet potatoes and eating them like that, but when inviting friends over for dinner, it doesn't really feel like a complete meal...

So, does anyone have suggestions for complementary/side dishes to go with sweet potatoes? Preferably meatless, since many of my friends are vegatarian.

Feel free to use this thread to ask for help with finding something to serve with other dishes too!
(and let me know if a thread of this kind already exists)

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Re: What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

Postby Zohar » Sun Jun 19, 2016 3:41 pm UTC

Personally I don't work too much on pairing between different dishes. I would pair food types - if sweet potatoes are being served, I probably wouldn't do another carb-rich dish.

With that in mind, I think these would go great with some black lentils. You could do roasted sweet potatoes (with some honey and chili perhaps?), cooked lentils in some coconut oil and bay leaf, and a salad made primarily with tomatoes (diced tomatoes, finely-sliced onion slightly picked in lemon or lime juice, cilantro/parsley).
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Re: What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

Postby Nath » Sun Jun 19, 2016 11:46 pm UTC

If your friends eat eggs, there are plenty of egg-based dishes that would work pretty well with a side of sweet potatoes. For instance, an omelette, or a sweet potato hash topped with poached eggs.

I like Zohar's lentil idea. Black beans would also go well, like in a Cuban-style preparation. The sweet potatoes would basically be subbing in for plantains here.

Sweet potato fries of course can go with a variety of sandwiches and vegetarian pseudoburgers (bean patties, portabello mushrooms, and the like).

Sweet potatoes also lend themselves to tempura, which can be served alongside a bunch of other Japanese dishes, but goes particularly well with udon.

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Re: What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

Postby Moo » Wed Jun 29, 2016 12:23 am UTC

Alternatively, you could bypass the problem by elevating the sweet potatoes to a single main attraction, like twice-baked (aka souffle) potatoes.

Bake them; scoop out most of the flesh; mash with some cream cheese, sliced spring onion or chives, halved cherry tomatoes, etc; restuff the shells; optionally top with cheese; bake until browned.
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Re: What do I serve with this? (Food pairings thread)

Postby araprado613 » Thu Sep 15, 2016 11:55 pm UTC

I find that Nigella Lawson's show is a good inspiration for food pairing ideas or complete meals. She balances everything out really well in one meal.

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