I love salads, especially in warm weather. I’m vegetarian and often eat salads, but I’m aware that not everyone enjoys salads, equating them with an uninspiring plate of lettuce and tomato.
Not all salads have to be boring!
This simple yet delicious recipe for warm, sweet potato salad has feta cheese, rocket, beans, toasted seeds and tomatoes. It is easily adapted though – swap the feta for another tangy cheese, or the rocket for another leafy green for instance. I used a tin of cannellini beans but any other beans or even some other types of pulses such as lentils could be used. I toasted some pumpkin seeds to sprinkle on top and add crunch, but if you don’t have pumpkin, sunflower seeds or nuts would work just as well.
This makes enough for 4 as a starter, or 2 as a main course.
Warm, sweet potato salad
- 2 large sweet potatoes
- 2 tbsp olive oil Extra virgin, if you have it
- 1 clove garlic Finely chopped
- 2 sprigs rosemary Use thyme if you prefer. If using dried, use half the amount
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp mustard
- 1 can cannellini beans Replace with another type of bean, eg butter bean, or use other pulses
- 1 small bag rocket leaves Replace this with any other leafy green
- 1/2 red onion Finely sliced
- 1 handful cherry tomatoes Chopped in half
- 100 gr feta cheese Cubed
- 2 tbsp seeds Use pumpkin / sunflower seeds or nuts such as walnuts / pistachio
- Preheat the oven to 180deg C.
- Peel a couple of large sweet potatoes (or just scrub them clean if you like to eat the skin). Slice them up into 1cm rounds. Toss the rounds in a good glug of olive oil, a finely chopped garlic clove and a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme or rosemary. Spread the coated sweet potato out in a baking tray and roast them for 25 -30 minutes until tender. It’s a good idea to give them a shake halfway through.
- Make a salad dressing, combining 1 tbs balsamic vinegar, 2 tsp olive oil and 1 tsp mustard. Drain your tin of pulses / beans (cannellini in my case) – rinse them if necessary as often they are quite gloopy straight out of a can. Add a small, finely sliced red onion, the leafy greens and tomatoes. Toss it all together in the dressing to coat all the ingredients. Season to taste.
- Lightly toast the seeds in a frying pan – you don’t need any oil to do this. Just keep an eye on them and shake them around the pan as they cook very quickly and will burn if you leave them too long. They will probably pop too if like me you’re using pumpkin seeds.
- Plate up the salad and lay the sweet potato disks over the salad. Sprinkle the chopped feta and toasted seeds or nuts on top.