Baked kumara, Hawaiian style

The other day I made the Small Girl a real treat for lunch. She was excited enough to start with, but by the time the sitting down to eat it came she threw a huge tantrum and did lots of shouting. Most of the time I would find this behaviour extremely disheartening, if not upsetting, but in this particular instance I sat at the table and ate it myself.

Baked Kumara
I remember my mum making these for lunch for the two of us and I used to make them a lot when I was a poor student. If you can suspend your disbelief for a moment, the salty/sweet Hawaiian pizza combo of pineapple and cheese really is delicious. Kumara – a better version of what the rest of the world knows as sweet potato – is very good for you. I think one kumara per person is good for lunch, but half one should be ample as an accompaniment to a pork chop or similiar. Just don’t go putting pineapple on that.

For two people
2 kumara or sweet potato, scrubbed but not peeled
2 handfuls grated cheddar
2 slices of pineapple (the sort that comes in juice, not syrup, if you’re getting it out of a tin), diced
1 handful sunflower seeds

Preheat the oven to 200C and put the washed kumara on an oven tray. Bake for about 40-60 minutes, until a skewer pierces the flesh easily. Remove from the oven and let cool for five minutes.
Carefully slice them in half and scoop the flesh into a bowl. Mash with a fork and stir in the pineapple and most of the cheese. Season well with salt and pepper, then scoop this mixture back into the waiting shells. Sprinkle the sunflower seeds and reserved cheese over the top. Return the filled kumara to the oven for another 15 minutes, until they are crispy and golden on top.

Do you have food wars in your house?



  1. April 23, 2012 / 8:58 pm

    🙂 Food wars? Sometimes with our teenager over pasta: he always wants spaghetti while we like other versions of pasta as well.

  2. April 23, 2012 / 9:03 pm

    Nothing to do with this but a comment about coffee for children: I give mine barley coffee, the easier to find in NZ is Ecco brand (in the supermarket), is like instant, but you can froth up some milk so it looks like a cappuccino too :-).

    Good luck for the competition!


  3. April 23, 2012 / 9:25 pm

    I love a good old fashioned mardy strop… wish I could get away with that now!… really love the look of these… I would SO have eaten them myself!

  4. April 24, 2012 / 4:15 am

    Yum! Never have to convince people in this house to eat sweet potato but I've never thought of preparing it like this – thanks!

  5. April 24, 2012 / 11:45 am

    Yum. My kids (2&4) know better than to strop when food is around, because I will just eat it. They don't get given any second chances. Straight into my tum. I like to think it's a good life lesson, the reality is that I'm very very greedy.

  6. April 24, 2012 / 12:49 pm

    food is a great topic for an argument! tonight sylvia had a tantrum over me giving her the wrong cheese – I would feel guilty if she hadn't had so little interest in her cheese lately!!! I love baked kumara – and I would no doubt love this combination – unfortunately sylvia wouldn't – to much mixing for her!

  7. April 24, 2012 / 9:15 pm

    Very interesting dish! I have never seen this before. Bookmarking!

  8. April 26, 2012 / 1:26 am

    Just cooked this for lunch and it was delish, added a little ham and goats cheese too, was so simple, thank you!

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