Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing

April 29, 2015

Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing


Everyone has a different idea of what constitutes eating “healthy”.
Some people abstain from meat, for others it’s just red meat, some give up cheese or gluten (ehm...me?) or fat — I mean, you name it, there’s a eating plan out there that promises that you can live forever just by giving up ice-cream. You know, just to throw a totally random example.

Sweet Potatoes




As humans, we like to think of ourselves as beings of reason and logic. We also have the presumption that “my logic is better than yours”. And when it comes to food we love to tell the world when, how, and what they should eat.
You hear people saying things like “this is good for you”, “this is bad for you”, “you should drink five gallons of water each day”, or “eat that and you will live forever!” everywhere. While waiting in line to check out at Whole Foods, in the subway, at the gym (well, especially at the gym), and at the office — I still find fascinating how coworkers have an opinion about everything.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing




No matter what people say, the truth is that nutrition science is an active, changing, growing body of knowledge, where scientific findings seem often to contradict one another or are subject to conflicting interpretations.
There’s a degree of uncertainty that isn’t likely to go away anytime soon.
Yet, many facts are known to a certain degree of accuracy. For instance we know that focusing on whole unprocessed foods, lots of veggies/fruit, good fats, lean protein, and drinking less alcohol and sugary drinks is a good thing to do. Some goes for crossing junk food off your menu.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing




But then again, your healthy is different from my healthy, so even if I were to tell you to just eat healthy food such as steamed broccoli, mashed sweet potatoes, raw kale, grilled chicken, blueberries, and brown rice, many of you wouldn’t agree with me.
Besides, that is not the point of this blog.
I think the point of this blog is to show things that make you excited about eating healthy. Things that you haven’t made yet or have never thought of before.
Some things you may like, some things you may not like.
If I can spark your interest or just a reaction, I’m happy.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing




But really, I didn’t mean to talk in general about healthy eating. What I meant to get to was the fact that this here: roasted sweet potatoes, arugula, and radishes served with a toothsome dressing and toasted sesame seeds, is the very definition of the food I consider healthy and I like to feast upon.
As you know salads are my favorite way to get all the food I want to eat all on one plate.
And lately I want to eat sweet potatoes and a ton of arugula.
Let me rephrase that, all I want to eat is warm sweet potatoes tossed with a to-die-for honey-balsamic dressing served over arugula with a ton of other good stuff.
I mean, that right there is healthy, nutritious, and delicious food. Agreed?

Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing


Roasted Sweet Potato, Sesame and Arugula Salad                                                     Print this recipe!
with Honey-Balsamic Dressing

Ingredients
Serves 4

2 medium sweet potatoes, diced (either peeled or unpeeled)
½ red onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ teaspoon chili powder
Pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
Salt and pepper
6 cups baby arugula
4 medium radishes, sliced paper thin
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives (optional)

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons cup extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Toss the sweet potatoes and onion with the vegetable oil, chili powder, cayenne, salt and pepper.
Place on a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, stirring gently every 5 to 10 minutes.
Increase the heat to 400°F (200°C) and roast for another 5 to 10 minutes until the sweet potatoes are golden brown. Continue to stir the sweet potato pieces as needed to prevent over-browning. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
In the meantime, whisk together vinegar, honey, mustard, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
In a medium bowl toss together arugula, sliced radishes, and chives.
In another bowl toss sweet potatoes with honey-balsamic dressing.
To serve, arrange arugula mixture on plates. Spoon sweet potatoes over arugula, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and serve.

Nutrition facts

One serving yields 233 calories, 17 grams of fat, 20 grams of carbs, and 2 grams of protein.

30 comments:

  1. I can literally taste this just by looking at it! I have yet to see a salad recipe this original, and have been looking to spice up my weekend salads. I can't wait to give it a try!! Lately though I have found sweet potatoes I've been buying at WholeFoods aren't super sweet and bake up kind of dry...sometimes they have the purple skinned ones that are super luscious.

    xx Jill
    Latest Post: Barre vs. Weight Lifting – Which One Helps You Lose Weight Faster?

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    1. I love the purple skinned ones, so expensive though!

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  2. Delicious! I am mad about sweet potatoes too ;) I feel like this is a nice hearty salad, lots of different textures, which means my husband might be convinced it is a main and not a side dish ;)

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    1. Ha! This is not a side dish, at all! ;)

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  3. You are spot on - us humans are funny things, often thinking we know what's best - in the process, often ignoring that we are all different and so are our ideas of whats best ... but, I gotta say - I'm loving your idea of "healthy" eats - and the simplicity and flavor combos of these roasted sweet potatoes with that definitely to die for honey mustard - just imagine if there were roasted beets in it too...mmm mmm mmm! :)

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    1. Why you want to ruin a delicious salad with roasted beets? WHY? ;)

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  4. yumm this is so simple yet so delicious!!!

    https://aspoonfulofnature.wordpress.com/

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  5. I love this post Mike! It's totally one I could have written. Food has almost become like a religion for some people, in that you can't even discuss it at dinner parties anymore, hehe. What a lovely salad! All flavors and tastes I love, I can't wait to try it! :-)

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    1. So true, food has become one of those tricky subjects like politics or religion. And I, for one, think it's really sad.

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  6. I like the idea of adding some chilli powder when roasting sweet potatoes. We should know where our food comes from. How and where it is grown. This is a great post Mike.

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  7. Give up ice cream!?! What the heck is wrong with you, man? Haha...just kidding! I do love how you bring a fun angle to all sorts of delicious healthy food here. It helps balance out all of the cake baking that happens in my kitchen. Does drooling over your healthy food count as being more balanced? I think it does. #WolfpackSaladClub

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    1. There's nothing wrong with me, what's wrong with you man??? ;)

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  8. In my opinion, each person is so unique - it takes a lot of attention to what works for your own body, slightly tune it as the years pass, but awareness is key.

    I dislike people who preach that a particular way to eat is the RIGHT one - the only advice that I think works for 99.99% of human beings is: EXERCISE. DO it often, do it in a challenging way.

    the rest, depends on your genes.

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    1. Well said Sally, exercise is the one thing that can really make a difference!

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  9. Always enjoy your writing Mike. This salad is rockin' too, love the dressing (and that bowl should be in my house!).

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  10. You have such a good outlook on exercise, food, and "healthy" eating. None of those things are a one-size-fits-all, and it's frustrating to me how people get on this kick or that kick, thinking it will solve all of their problems. The fitness industry is so saturated with both good and bad information (I guess like every other industry), and any chance we get to educate people about trying to live the most balanced life you can is good, right? Sorry for the rant...oopsies. This salad looks yummy, by the way! I've never added sweet potatoes to a salad. Happy Friday!!

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    Replies
    1. You should totally try adding roasted sweet potatoes to a salad. It's (almost) life changing!

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  11. You're absolutely right, everyone seems to have an opinion about what constitutes healthy these days! I prefer to stay out of the arguments and stick to the veggies - love the salad!

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  12. I love sweet potato and have it in my salads regularly - love the chilli hit and yummo dressing which I haven't tried before.

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    1. I love roasting sweet potatoes with chili it really adds something!

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    2. This is a good site Mike! Found it through Cauliflower Fritters now I'm working my way through a number of your recipes. Have recommended it to a number of my foodie pals, the blogging is fun too. Thanks :-)

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  13. I did thoroughly like reading your post. You are right and that's one of the things I like about your space. You do not restrict yourself and balance is key. That's how work and everyone is entitled to their opinions. What works for one might not work for the other, now that said I do love this salad and everything you cook.

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  14. Try this tasty variation: roasted sweet tate cubes, roasted thick slices of cabbage (toss both with olive oil, salt, and pepper), cooked millet, dried cranberries, and salad greens, drizzled with a roasted garlic tahini honey dressing!

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    1. I definitely will, thanks for the suggestion!

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  15. Loving the flavors in this salad dude! Definitely wolfpack approved!

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  16. all pict make me hungry dud... :D

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