Roasting has got to be the easiest way to cook about anything. Sweet potatoes are no exception, they roast beautifully. Now I like to season my sweet potatoes quite aggressively with coarse sea salt and freshly ground pepper, but you can add as much or as little as you want. The one thing I definitely recommend, is to buy organic sweet potatoes. Trust me, you’ll thank me. Whenever possible I try to buy organic, but this is one of the vegetables I ALWAYS buy organic. A few years ago I did a taste test between some imported high carbon footprint non-organic taters flown in from a far away continent and organic ones grown in nearby Italy. Incomparable. Organic sweet potatoes just taste better. They are less watery and have more depth of flavor. Plus if you purchase organic, you can eat the whole thing since you don’t have to worry about peeling off the skin where pesticides reside. But, for this recipe, I’m going for a velvety texture, so I’ve peeled them.
This is a super healthy and perfectly light all-in-one salad that tastes amazing and is packed with pure goodness. Quinoa is one of my go-to grains (which is actually a seed!). I love it. It’s a complete protein making it perfect for vegetarians and it’s delicious slightly nutty flavor goes with absolutely everything. Together with beta-carotene rich and fibre packed sweet potatoes – yes, surprise, they have twice the fibre as regular potatoes – this salad and it’s fantastic array of flavors and textures is filled with loads of essential vitamins and minerals that will keep you healthy and feeling energized!
This roasted sweet potato, quinoa and arugula salad with pomegranate seeds, roasted nuts and cilantro in honey lime dressing is heavenly – you might even find yourself enjoying it so much that you eat for lunch and dinner!
For the salad:
1 tablespoon (or more) olive oil
2 organic sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 cup quinoa (200 g)
50 g baby arugula, chopped
1 bunch fresh cilantro, leaves removed
2 tablespoons mixed seeds (such as pine nuts, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds), roasted
seeds from half a pomegranate
For the dressing:
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon honey (more if you prefer a sweeter dressing)
1 garlic clove, minced
seas salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1. Preheat oven to 425°F / 220°C
2. In a large bowl, toss sweet potato cubes with olive oil until completely coated. Spread sweet potatoes out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper in a single layer, season with salt and pepper. Slide the tray in the oven and roast for about 25-30 minutes, flipping them once, until everything is soft and a little crisp at the edges.
3. Meanwhile, add 1 cup of dried quinoa with 2 cups of water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes or until quinoa is fluffy. Remove from heat, cover, and allow it to sit for about 5 minutes then fluff quinoa with a fork. Set aside to cool.
4. Whisk together all of the dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
5. In a large bowl, combine the quinoa, arugula, cilantro and toss with dressing. Fold in roasted sweet potatoes, sprinkle with the pomegranate seeds and toasted seeds, serve and enjoy!