Friday, 24 April 2009

Not Welsh Red Dragon Pie, but just as good

Vegetable growers all over the U.K are beginning to grow sweet potatoes either in greenhouses or under polytunnels, but for the likes of me where space is a premium, I still have to buy them. The season for sweet potatoes is October to March, but here you will be able to find them all year round, usually imported from America.

There are two types of sweet potatoes, one with pale cream flesh, and the other bright orange flesh. I like using the latter, but it was not an immediate liking of the vegetable, it was taste that developed with time. Sweet potatoes have a very creamy texture that makes them ideal for savoury dishes. One way I like eating sweet potatoes is baking them; or roasting them.
This pie started off as as a version of Welsh Dragon Pie (adapted from Sarah Brown's Vegetarian Kitchen).  This vegetarian Welsh Pie is traditionally made with aduki beans fondly called by some Chinese people as "red dragon" or "red wonder" beans. For this recipe I had also decided to make it with Sweet potatoes instead of mashed potatoes, I thought the orangey-red of the sweet potato would be a nice touch.

After having cooked the beans and ready to assemble the dish, it dawned on me that I had cooked with mung beans, not aduki beans. Obviously, I wasn’t thinking, but the result was still really nice.
Serve with green vegetables.


  1. This looks delicious and I've never seem a dish like this before.

    Have you tried Japanese sweet potatoes. They are my favorite but can be a bit hard to find.

    I wanted to ask you: how do you keep pests off of your plants? Something is eating all my plants in our yard and I don't know what to use. Is there anything natural that works?

  2. Hiya Michele,
    No I have not tried Japanese sweet potatoes, if i see them either at a farmers market or supermarket, I will make a point of trying them. Are they very differnt from the sweet potato we know?

    The question about pests is not an easy one to answer, as it depends on what kind of plant is being munched by the little beasites. If it is brassicas, I sometimes use rhubarb leaves and allow them to steep in water for a month or so, then use this to deter butterflies laying their eggs. If you are protecting tomato seedlings from greenfly, I have used an eco friendly washing liquid to spritz on greenfly, this won't affect the plant. If its slugs, which are my main problem. I use a number of diffent methods, depending on what it plant is being effected: egg shells; spent coffee that you can sometimes get from Starkbucks or bran scattered around the plant. A time consuming way, is to pick of the bugs at night with a torch when they least expect it, I may do this at my small garden plot at home, but would never attempt it at the allotment. You can also find some organically certified products, that don't harm the plant or the other kind wildlife in your garden. I have used Growing Success in the past for slugs. I hope this helps to some extent.

  3. Oh Michele,
    For slugs another thing we have used is beer traps. But be warned the stench is so awful, it willmake your belly turn. But it works! and its kinder to the environment.

  4. japanese sweet potatoes are similar to regular ones, but they have a milder flavor that's hard to describe. They are just wonderful in tempura.

    Thank you so much for the garden info. I'm going to print it out!

  5. I will have to try them, if I should ever see them.

    Your very welcome about the gardening information. I was glad to help.


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