Today’s recipe for Sweet Potato, Arugula and Feta Salad comes from the Greek island of Ikaria by way of Diane Kochilas and Today Food. The small Aegean island found fame in 2008 in a book by Dan Buettner about regions with unusual longevity. I guess I wouldn’t mind getting a few recipes from people who (disproportionately) live to be 100!
With the healthy olive oil, arugula and antioxidant loaded sweet potatoes in this salad, it’s easy to give some credit to the diet. Of course a relaxed life in a Mediterranean climate can’t hurt either.
Of course it’s not all about health and the flavors of this salad really took me by surprise. Pungent red onion, spicy arugula, honey-like sweet potato = sophisticated flavor blend! Just think classic opposites like sweet sour sauce, or hot & sour soup. Yum!
The original recipe called for boiling, then cutting up the sweet potato but I decided to cube and roast mine. I love my caramelization and sweet potatoes are sooo much easier to cut up than squash! Two cooks, two versions—seems like official permission to cook that sweet potato any way you want (thanksgiving leftover sweet potato salad anyone?)!
Today we’re in the middle of a fall storm as the remnants of Hurricane Patricia reach north. Yup, I am clearly missing out on that warm island part of the picture.
But thumbs up on the salad!
- o 2 large sweet potatoes
- o Salt, preferably sea salt
- o Coarsely ground black pepper
- o 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 1-2 extra for roasting (optional)
- o ¼ cup red wine or balsamic vinegar
- o 1 large red onion, halved and thinly sliced, or 1 bunch scallions, sliced
- o 2 bunches fresh arugula, trimmed and coarsely chopped
- o 1 cup crumbled Greek feta cheese (optional)
- Cut the sweet potatoes into ½ inch cubes, then toss with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast at 400 F stirring part way through. Cook until starting to turn golden, about 20 minutes. (Alternatively, boil or bake your sweet potatoes until tender, then cool partially and cut into cubes.)
- To make dressing, combine olive oil and vinegar and whisk until emulsified. Add dash of salt and pepper, taste and adjust as needed.
- In a large salad bowl (or individual serving bowls), toss the arugula with the dressing. Top with sweet potato cubes, sliced red onion and feta (if using). Serve immediately.