This side-dish (or appetizer!) includes roasted sweet potatoes wrapped in bacon. An herbed goat cheese of rosemary and sage gets tucked under the bacon before baking, giving it time to get melty in the oven. The flavors and textures here are just so happy together: sweet, soft potatoes; salty, crispy bacon; and herby, tangy, creamy goat cheese.
Bacon-Wrapped Sweet Potatoes with Herbed Goat Cheese
(Yields app. 12 wedges, easily multiplied)
1 large sweet potato
2 teaspoons olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 slices bacon*
¼ cup softened goat cheese (2 oz. from a log)
1 sprig fresh rosemary, minced (1 teaspoon minced)**
2 fresh sage leaves, minced (½ teaspoon minced)
12 small fresh sage leaves for garnish
*You’ll need a half strip of bacon per sweet potato wedge. If your sweet potato is very large, you may need more than 6 slices of bacon.
**In a pinch, you can substitute dried herbs for both the fresh rosemary and sage. Use a pinch of dried rosemary (about a ¼ teaspoon) and an even smaller pinch of dried sage (⅛ teaspoon at most).
Preheat oven to 400*F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Peel sweet potato, rinse, and dry. Cut in half lengthwise, then into ¼-inch-wide wedges (they can be slightly wider than this, but a ½-inch is too wide and will take too long to cook). Try to make them as evenly sized as possible. (Do this step first so that you know how many bacon slices you will need – you need a ½ bacon slice per wedge.)
Place wedges in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine, and set aside.
Heat frying pan over medium-high heat. Place bacon strips in pan and cook for 4-5 minutes, until the edges are just starting to brown, but the bacon is still very underdone and pliable. Place bacon strips on a paper-towel-lined paper plate to drain. Once cool, cut each strip in half (crosswise). Set aside.
Meanwhile, combine your goat cheese and herbs.
To assemble, place oiled sweet potato wedges on your parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Place about a teaspoon of the herbed goat cheese mixture on the center of each wedge. Wrap a half strip of bacon around the goat cheese, with the ends meeting on the underside of each wedge. Use a toothpick to secure the bacon by running it through both ends, parallel to the wedge (in other words, don’t pierce the sweet potato).
Bake for 15 minutes until sweet potatoes are soft and beginning to brown on the ends and the bacon is crisp. Remove from pan to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain briefly. Remove toothpicks. Before serving, garnish each piece with a sage leaf by resting it on top of the bacon.
Credits: Images, styling & recipe by Liz Berget.