APPY HOUR: Vegan Sweet Potato Tostadas + A New Local Cookbook

We love when local folks are as dedicated to food as we are! And it's even better when they channel that love into something we can all enjoy. Enter: The Balancing Point Cookbook, Volume 1, written by Cheryl Gomez. All the recipes are gluten-free and they range from vegetarian to vegan to Paleo. Cheryl suggests one really simple tenet that we wholeheartedly believe in: Eat real food!

Cheryl starts her book by saying, "Food is meant to nourish, repair, and replenish us. It can help us be healthy and energetic, or or it can contribute to inflammation, disease, or just keep us from having the clarity and energy to actualize the full experience life is offering us."

She is from Couer d'Alene, so she shops at health food stores up there, but the Co-op offers the majority of ingredients listed in her recipes, some in bulk to save money and lessen environmental impact. We'll be carrying her book in the store soon, so be sure to stop in and pick up a copy. (To take a peek inside her book, click here.)

The Balancing Point Cookbook is full of recipes for appetizers, breads, drinks, desserts, and even some body care items. All of which are full of whole, nutritious ingredients. Cheryl believes that you don't have to choose between healthy and yummy, which is especially apparent in this recipe for Sweet Potato Tostadas.

To make this recipe you will need:
1 large sweet potato
1 1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 can vegetarian refried beans
1 avocado, mashed (season with salt and garlic powder to taste)
(we garnished with cilantro, tomatoes and a squeeze of fresh lime juice)

Peel the sweet potato and slice thinly, about 1/8 inch thick. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt the coconut oil. Add sweet potato slices and brown on side, then flip them over to brown the other side. Top each side with salt and pepper. When both sides have browned, remove from skillet and drain on paper towels. Warm beans in a small pan. Top one side of sweet potato chip with beans, mashed avocado, and garnish with cilantro, tomatoes, and lime.