For our annual Purim seuda (festive meal), I decided to prepare a new salad.
This salad took inspiration from a delicious battata (sweet potato) salad that I enjoyed at Cafe Greg in Rosh Pina in the Upper Galilee of Israel. It combined the delicious colors, flavors and textures of roasted sweet potatoes, candied almonds and shredded fresh beets. All these were served atop a bed of arugula and baby kale and then tossed right before serving.
I prepared this salad as my feature salad, reserving my biggest salad bowl for this new recipe.
The only thing that took extra time was roasting the sweet potato cubes in advance. It was well worth the effort.
It must have been delicious because it was the only item that I prepared for the seuda that was finished within the first hour.
3 cups checked salad greens (see kosher notes)
2 cups roasted cubed sweet potatoes
2 cups shredded fresh beets
1/2 cup nuts
thinly sliced scallions
french fried onions (optional)
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons cider vinegar or lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or greased foil.
Peel sweet potato and cut into small cubes. Place sweet potato cubes in a single layer on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil or spray with cooking spray and lightly sprinkle with kosher salt.
Roast for 35-55 minutes checking that sweet potato cubes are crisp on outside and soft on inside before removing from oven. Cubes may be prepared in advance. They may either be added to the salad warm or at room temperature.
Peel beets. Using the shredder disk on the food processor, shred beets.
Combine, process or shake all dressing ingredients together.
Layer greens and shredded beets. Lightly drizzle dressing over the salad. Top with nuts, scallions and french fried onions. Toss right before serving.
Kosher laws disallow the eating of any whole insects and therefore most greens require a process of soaking, rinsing and in some cases, pureeing. I have found that flat-leafed greens like baby spinach and flat-leaf kale are much easier to check for insects than their curly-leaf counterparts. Kashrut authorities differ on the proper checking of leafy vegetables and some disallow the use of spinach and kale altogether. This blog was not designed to be your kosher authority, so please consult your local rabbinic authority regarding using and preparing greens such as spinach and kale.
Cubed butternut squash or fresh pumpkin may be substituted for the sweet potatoes.
When I prepare greens in advance, I place a few absorbent paper towels at the bottom of the bag or dish. I then layer the greens over the paper towels. These paper towels will absorb any extra moisture in the greens and will keep the green fresh.