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Top salad with pan-fried sweet potatoes
In my quest for simple, flavorful dishes, I often come across handy lists compiled by food magazines and websites: “30-minute meals,” “five-ingredient recipes,” “one-pot dishes” and so on.
I often bookmark them or print them out, add them to my pile of recipes and subsequently forget about them until my stomach remembers that I was craving a specific taste.
This time, when I was seeking a hearty salad — one that could be more of a meal — I found this one on the Cooking Light website under a compilation called “What to Eat the Other 29 Days of November.” Sure, it’s March, but the flavors seem to extend to other parts of the year.
Sweet potatoes are one of my favorites of the Thanksgiving meal, so I’m happy to eat them year-round. (The recipe also appeared under Cooking Light’s heading of “Vegan Thanksgiving Main Dishes,” in case you need such a recipe this fall.)
The recipe writer promises five ingredients, with items such as water and salt not included in that tally.
Plus, check out the photo. It’s colorful and looks easy to make.
It combines the sweetness of the potatoes (naturally) along with the nuttiness and unexpected tanginess brought by the almond dressing (which has a decent splash of lemon juice in it). Plus, I’m a fan of arugula when it comes time for salad greens. When I made this, I picked up an arugula-spinach mix.
I wasn’t familiar with almond butter, though my friends who have children with peanut allergies are fans. So I wasn’t ready to buy a huge jar of almond butter but found packets of Justin’s Classic Almond Butter right next to the jars. For this recipe, two packets did the trick.
The recipe writers advise that any nut butter will work in place of the almond butter, including peanut, cashew or sunflower butter. It also suggests cannellini or navy beans in place of canned chickpeas.
Cooking Light advises that this makes four plates with a serving size of 11/2 cups of salad, about 3 sweet potato medallions and about 11/2 tablespoons of the dressing. Of course, if you prefer for this to be more of a meal and less of an accompaniment to your main course, pile on the potatoes.
For a healthy-ish lunch, pack the components separately. Heat up the sweet potatoes at work, add to your greens and drizzle on the sauce.
Sweet Potato Medallions With Almond Sauce and Chickpea Salad
From CookingLight.com. The recipe writers advise that any nut butter will work in place of the almond butter, including peanut, cashew or sunflower butter. It also suggests cannellini or navy beans in place of canned chickpeas. The recipe makes four plates with a serving size of 11/2 cups of salad, about 3 sweet potato medallions and about 11/2 tablespoons of the dressing. Add more or less depending on whether you’re eating this as a main course.
4 small (4-ounce) sweet potatoes
1/4 cup creamy natural almond butter
31/2 tablespoons warm water
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 (15-ounce) can unsalted chickpeas, rinsed and drained
5 ounces baby arugula
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
Prick potatoes all over with a fork; place on a microwave-safe plate, and microwave at high just until tender, about 5 minutes. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds.
Whisk together almond butter, water and 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a bowl. Set aside.
Brush potato slices on one side with 1 tablespoon oil. Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Working in batches, cook potato slices, oil side down, until golden brown, or about 2 minutes. Be careful not to burn the medallions.
Combine chickpeas, arugula, salt, pepper, remaining 2 tablespoons juice and 1 tablespoon oil in a large bowl. Divide chickpea mixture among 4 plates; top with sweet potato slices. Drizzle with almond butter sauce.
Yields 4 servings.