Growing up, I loved “Sloppy Joe Night.” My mom created some of the best sloppy samiches on the face of the earth! Sometimes referred to as “Sloppy Toms,” when ground turkey was the protein of choice, but always drippy, tangy, sweet, and saucy…perfect for an evening at home or at the family cabin. I think, right along with sloppy Joes, tacos at The Cabin really made me grin. They too were drippy, saucy, and a blast to gobble up with my hands and lick my fingers clean.
Times have changed and so have my meal preferences. My palate seems a bit more sophisticated ~ maybe not. In any case, I don’t find myself craving the messy meals of childhood as often as I dream of sauteed Brussels sprouts and seared filet mignon, covered in caramelized onions and delicately drizzled with a fig balsamic reduction…
I’ll take my meal with a silver spoon while I’m at it.
And back to the “sloppy” theme, I share both the recipe below, which tastes fantastic, and the photographs with an honest heart and themed confession of utter sloppiness. The wonderfully spiced meat sits inside a perfectly warm and deliciously starchy sweet potato (either richly red or candied yellow) and tastes undeniably amazing, (Sloppy Sams = sweet potatoes) but the photos simply leave me feeling rather less than…
The recipe “rocks,” as they say, and I guarantee enjoyment. However, for some true oogling and awing at the site of Paleo Sloppy Joes, I suggest a trip over to The Preppy Paleo. Susan’s “primal recipes with a little panache” prove to be much more eye catching and pleasing to the eye this time around.
However, I must purport, while Sloppy Joes are 110% finger lickin’ good, these messy mounds of meat will simply never be described as photogenic feasts.
Read. Eat. Enjoy.
Spiced Sloppy Sams
2 extra large sweet potatoes
1 lb. ground grass fed beef (80% lean)
1/2 large onion, diced
1 large bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground allspice
3 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1/3 c. tomato sauce
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Wrap the sweet potatoes in foil and bake until super soft ~ about 1 hour (or more, depending on your oven and your taters). Unwrap and set aside.
In a large skillet over medium heat, brown the meat, adding the onions and peppers just as the ground meat is beginning to cook through. Continue to cook and stir until onions become translucent and peppers are soft. Add the cloves, allspice, chili powder, cinnamon, and a generous portion of sea salt. Stir well. Add the vinegar, tomato paste, and tomato sauce and continue to stir until well combined and super saucy. Adding a touch of catsup or even honey will sweeten the pot.
Slice each sweet potato down the center and stuff with half of the spiced, sloppy, saucy fixings.
Lick your fingers throughout the entire meal.