Cancer Fighting Cooking Class – Quick, Easy and Healthy Recipes for Thanksgiving!

I taught a cooking class today for employees at Financial Pathways of the Piedmont, a non-profit that does credit counseling and helps clients avoid foreclosure. They were a really fun group that were more than willing to jump in and participate, ask great questions and share tips with each other. My favorite kind of class!

I was able to make the salad dressing, whipped sweet potato and chili in 1 hour.
The third recipe we made during class. The food costs was ~$50 and we
had 12-15 people eat lunch, with some food left over. That is a budget
friendly meal!
Who ever said healthy eating is expensive?

You might be feeling pretty jealous that you weren’t there. You probably should be. 😛  Good news though! You can recreate the class right in your own kitchen! Here are the recipes that we used for the class today.

whipped sweet potatoes.jpgWhipped Sweet Potatoes with Apples

This recipe comes from


  • 3 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 6 medium sized potatoes)
  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 Tbsp. pure, dark maple syrup, or to taste
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2 tsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 Golden Delicious apple
  • Nutmeg for garnish


  1. Peel and cut the sweet potatoes into 2-inch cubes. Steam them in a steamer basket, or in a pot with 1/4 cup of water, cover and steam for 10-15 minutes or until the cubes are tender. You can also steam them in the microwave. [Julie’s notes – for time sake, I bought them already washed, peeled and cut. Worth it at a little over $3 per 2# package! I also used the pot method of steaming. Added too much water, so I ended up having to strain them with a colander. Not a big problem though.]
  2. Place the sweet potatoes in a large bowl.
  3. Add the canola oil and maple syrup to the hot sweet potatoes and mash with a fork or a masher until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spray a 9-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Spread the sweet potatoes into the prepared dish, making an even layer. [Julie’s notes – I never used any salt and pepper. No one complained!]
  4. Melt the 2 teaspoons of butter in the microwave. Peel, halve and core the apple. Place each half, cut-side down, on a cutting board and cut it crosswise into thin slices. Arrange the slices in overlapping rows to cover the sweet potatoes. Brush the apples lightly with the melted butter.
  5. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees until the sweet potatoes are heated through and the apple slices have softened, about 25 to 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature with nutmeg sprinkled on top.

Makes 12 servings, 1/2 cup per serving.

Homemade Dijon Vinaigrette


  • 5 Tbsp. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Dijon Mustard, (use coarse ground, if available)
  • 1/2 tsp. Honey
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • fresh basil, if in season


  1. Place all ingredients in a jar. Shake and serve! Makes enough for 6.

Carolina Caviar

This recipe comes from my co-worker. It’s so easy and tastes great! It’s hard to beat that combination! We served this over fresh lettuce from my farmer.


•   1 can (15.5 oz.) black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
•   3/4 cup chopped sweet red pepper
•   3/4 cup chopped green pepper
•   3 green onions, chopped OR 1 medium onion, chopped
•   1/4 cup minced fresh parsley (optional)
•   1 garlic clove, minced
•   Homemade vinaigrette to taste
•   black pepper


In a bowl, combine all ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

homemade blackbean chili.jpgHomemade Black Bean Chili

This is the same recipe that I shared about two posts ago, so I’ll just direct you to this page to find it. The comments were that it was spicy – in a good way! People really enjoyed it.

After we sat down to eat together, I realized that we were all very much enjoying a vegan meal! Well, except for the small amount of butter brushed on the apples. It just goes to show – you can serve all kinds of healthy recipes at your Thanksgiving meal. No one will complain as long as it tastes great!

– Julie

Enhanced by Zemanta
What is Teff? Info and Recipes for this Whole Grain!
Food Day 2012. It's Time to Eat Real With Cancer Fighting Foods!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *