Rob and I traveled recently to California, to old haunts and new in San Francisco and Wine Country. We first visited the lovely little town of Healdsburg, in Sonoma County, on our honeymoon lo these many years ago, and instantly fell in love. We’ve returned many times.
On our recent visit, we were determined to explore new spots in this very familiar territory. We stayed at the Calderwood Inn just off Healdsburg’s tree-shaded plaza. I highly recommend it — everything about the Calderwood was comfortable, from the deep front porch to innkeeper Laurie’s delicious breakfasts.
Most B&B breakfasts tend to be fairly indulgent. But Laurie’s dishes were not only tasty, but beautiful and relatively healthful: stocked with veggies (many of which she’d harvested from the inn’s backyard garden), beautifully presented, garnished with fresh herbs and flowers, just the right thing to anchor a day of wine-tasting.
This recipe for sweet potato hash with poached eggs is inspired by one of the Calderwood Inn’s fabulous breakfast dishes. Double the recipe to feed a crowd, and bake the squash and sweet potato ahead of time. It may seem like the several steps are too much work for breakfast, but really, this healthy breakfast dish comes together easily.
And it’s a terrific “breakfast for dinner” option. Thanks for the inspiration, Calderwood Inn!
sweet potato-bacon hash with poached eggs recipe
1 large acorn squash, seeded and cut into quarters
1 large sweet potato
2 slices bacon, chopped
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1 bunch Swiss chard or spinach, stems removed, sliced
4 large farm-fresh eggs
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Snipped fresh herbs and edible flowers for garnish
Preheat oven to 350°. Place squash pieces on a rimmed baking sheet; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Prick the sweet potato all over with a fork and place it on the baking sheet. Roast until the squash (about 25–30 minutes) and the sweet potato (45–50 minutes) are tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife. Remove and let cool. (Can be prepared ahead.)
Meanwhile, sauté bacon in a skillet until browned but not too crispy; transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to drain. To the bacon drippings, add the onion and bell pepper and sauté until translucent, about 7 minutes. Cut the sweet potato in half and scoop the flesh into the pan; cook, mashing the potato, until the hash is heated through. Add the bacon and season with salt and pepper.
In a sauté pan, cook the Swiss chard until wilted, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
To poach the eggs, bring a large, wide pan of water to a boil; reduce heat to simmer. One at a time, crack each egg onto a small saucer and slip it gently into the simmering water. Poach eggs about 3 minutes, or to your preferred doneness.
To serve, place one piece of acorn squash on a plate; top with a spoonful of sautéed chard and a generous spoonful of sweet potato hash. Place a poached egg on top; season with salt and pepper.