This salad sounds like it should be a dessert. Sweet potato, maple syrup, pecans, it should be a pie. Or a stack of pancakes.
Don't worry though, I know you're smart, I know you're not going to be fooled into eating salad, thinking it's a dessert. You'll see when you make this, that there are other things in here too. There are herbs, spring onions, chilli, sultanas, orange and lemon juice, ginger, cinnamon, lots of zing! zing! zing! that really makes it a salad you want to eat. Not push around your plate, pretending to eat, which is what usually happens with me and salads.
When I was making this, I had a thought that this might be the first salad ever featured on Stovetop. But then I double checked and saw that we have seen a sweet and salty celery, white anchovy, grape & parsley salad, a cabbage, broad bean and fennel salad with green goddess dressing and Jamie Oliver's peach, prosciutto & mozzarella salad.
It's salad galore around here! That makes me feel healthy, and grown up, and less guilty about putting maple syrup on my sweet potato.
This recipe is one from one of London's most-loved cafes, Ottolenghi, which has published Plenty, one of the best vegetarian cookbooks I have ever read. We ate this alongside their cauliflower and cumin fritters, which I'll tell you about another day, (the wait will be worth it!).
Roasted Sweet Potato, Maple & Pecan Salad
Adapted from Yottam Ottolenghi's Plenty
1 large sweet potato, skin on, cut into 2cm chunks
3 tablespoons olive oil
35g pecans, roughly chopped
4 spring onions, finely sliced
4 tablespoons each finely chopped coriander and parsley
1/4 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
salt and pepper
60ml olive oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C. Place the cubed sweet potato on a parchment-lined baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Roast for 30 mins or until tender. Gently turn over halfway through cooking time.
Meanwhile, combine all dressing ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
Remove sweet potato from oven and cool for ten minutes. Toss together with pecans, spring onions, herbs, chilli, sultanas, salt and pepper. Drizzle over dressing and toss to coat. Serve. Salad will keep for a couple of days in the fridge.