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Roasted Sweet Potato & Spinach Salad with Cilantro-Lime dressing

How do you like your sweet potatoes?? I like mine baked/roasted, boiled, cooked over a direct fire, smoked in charcoal and any other way you can imagine! If there is any other way that I do not know if, please let me know in the comments section!! :) I was not aware of roasted/baked sweet potatoes until my co-sis Bharati made it for us one day. I loved how roasting intensified the sweetness!! I made some roasted sweet potatoes for snacking yesterday and had some leftovers. So they went into a salad, with some spinach. All the other ingredients went in as I spotted them in the fridge. But the highlight of the salad I made is the dressing. Simple and fresh!! You all know how much I love cilantro. The dressing also happened by chance, I started to make something like the green chutney that I usually make, and modified it a little bit. I also added in some of the Peanut Garlic Chutney powder that I always have in my pantry. It is a great ingredient to have on hand as you can make dressings or dips in just minutes.

Ingredients:
Serves- 2

Spinach – 3 cups, packed (preferably pre-washed baby spinach)
Apple – 1 small (I used Gala, use whatever you have on hand)
Cucumber – 1/2 cup (halved and sliced)
Onion – a handful (preferably red, sliced)
Tomato – 1 medium (halved and sliced)
Avocado – 1 small (sliced, optional)
Mushrooms – 4-5 (sliced, optional)
Almonds – a few (to add some crunch)

For the Roasted Sweet potato:


Sweet Potato – 1 large (cut like thick french fries)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Oil (Olive oil or Canola oil) – 2 Tbsp
Coriander powder – 1 Tbsp (optional)

For the Cilantro-Lime dressing:

Cilantro/Coriander leaves – 1/3 cup (packed)
Ginger – 1 Tbsp (chopped)
Jalapeno/Serrano chilli pepper – 1 no. (seeded if you can’t take the heat)
Lime zest – 1 large lime
Lime juice – 3 Tbsp
Honey – 1 Tbsp (or up to 3 Tbsp)
Apple Cider Vinegar – 1 Tbsp
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 1/4 cup
Peanut Garlic Chutney powder – 1 Tbsp (more or less to taste)
Salt and crushed pepper – to taste

Note: If you cannot make the chutney powder, substitute with one large garlic clove and a few Tbsp of crushed peanuts.

Method:

  • To make the dressing: Combine the jalapeno, ginger and garlic (if using) into a food processor and pulse a few times, until you can’t see big pieces anymore. Then add in the cilantro and pulse twice. Then gradually add in the EVOO, while the food processor is running. This will help in creating an emulsion. If you don’t have a food processor, add the ingredients in a blender jar and pulse many times until you see an dressing that looks like this picture below. Pour the dressing into a bowl and whisk in the salt, pepper and the chutney powder.

  • To Roast the sweet potatoes: Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut the sweet potatoes into thick wedges, like thick french fries. Put the wedges into a ziploc bag and add the salt, pepper, oil and the coriander powder, if using. Seal the ziploc and then massage to coat the sweet potatoes evenly. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 35-40 minutes, turning over the wedges after 20-25 minutes. Bake them a little longer if you like them crispier, but keep an eye on them so you don’t end up with burnt fries. These are good just on their own. Snack, and then use the leftovers in the salad!
  • Prepare all the vegetables as mentioned. Take all the vegetables, except the avocados in a large salad bowl and mix lightly. Drizzle the dressing on top and then gently toss to coat all the veggies. Add in the avocados and sprinkle the almonds on top. Serve immediately.

Note: Coat the avocado slices in some lime juice to prevent browning. Also, never over-dress your salads. Dressings can weigh down you salad and feel very soggy.

 

 

 

 

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