By Alison Ladman
To be honest, it’s hard not to get inspired by hasselback potatoes, those deliciously crisp and creamy potatoes that are thinly sliced so they fan out accordion-style during roasting. The edges take on lovely french fry qualities, while the insides stay moist and tender. Add a serious splash of butter or oil and they can be pretty heavenly.
But we decided to take them in a different direction for grilling season, starting by swapping out the potatoes themselves. Instead, we slice (somewhat thickly) sweet potatoes. But where classic hasselback potatoes get just butter or oil drizzled between those slices, we smeared a blend of butter, goat cheese, orange zest and fresh thyme between ours (which is why we slice ours thicker).
Wrapped in foil, the sliced and smeared sweet potatoes land on the grill for about 20 minutes. When they come off, they are sweet and tender and richly creamy. If you’d like to get a bit of crisp to the edges of your sweet potatoes, just open the foil on the top of each after about 10 minutes of cooking.
These sweet potatoes also are easily prepped ahead of time. Just slice, smear and wrap them up to a day ahead, then refrigerate until ready to grill.
GOAT CHEESE-STUFFED GRILLED SWEET POTATOES
Start to finish: 40 minutes
4-ounce log goat cheese
2 tablespoons butter, softened
Zest of 1 orange
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 medium sweet potatoes
Heat one side of the grill to medium.
In a small bowl, mix together the goat cheese, butter, orange zest, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, the pepper, thyme and garlic. Set aside.
One at a time, cut deep slits crosswise into each sweet potato. The slits should be spaced about 1/2 inch apart and cut down to within about 1/4 inch of the base of the potatoes. Don’t cut all the way through; you want the potato slices to remain attached at the bottom. Microwave the potatoes for 5 minutes on high.
Use a thin spreading knife to carefully spread a small amount of the goat cheese mixture between each of the slices in the potatoes. Brush each sweet potato all over with olive oil and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Wrap each potato in foil, then place on the cooler side of the grill. Cook, moving them occasionally to prevent burning, for 25 to 35 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender all the way through.
Allow to remain wrapped and rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Nutrition information per serving: 260 calories; 130 calories from fat (50 per cent of total calories); 14 g fat (8 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 30 mg cholesterol; 680 mg sodium; 27 g carbohydrate; 4 g fibre; 5 g sugar; 8 g protein.