Meatless Monday - Sweet Potato, Date and Grape Salad

Sometimes, we just want to lighten our meals.  Many times we look to greens to create the bed of salad as our meal.  And greens are important, but sometimes we are looking for something a little bit different!    This inspiration...

Sometimes, we just want to lighten our meals.  Many times we look to greens to create the bed of salad as our meal.  And greens are important, but sometimes we are looking for something a little bit different!    This inspiration is sweet and savory for a very fulfilling salad that is a Meatless Monday winner.

Naming these three unusual suspects for a salad!

Sweet Potatoes, Red Grapes, Dates
Sweet Potatoes, Red Grapes, Dates

Once again the one and only Nancy Waldeck hit a home run with this creation.  There are many things to love about Nancy as the Atlanta Partyologist and Healthy Chef, but I really have come to appreciate her ability to break-down recipes and help you know what different spices are that can complement a dish.   Within this recipe she ever shares the secret to creating your own Garam Masala.  I am fortunate to have my own Penzeys Spices right down the street, so I have access to many different spices and treats from around the world.

I hope you try this treat with three unsuspecting ingredients in Sweet Potatoes, Dates and Grapes.

Sweet Potato, Date and Grape Salad

Ingredients:

    • 1/4 Cup Low-Fat Mayonnaise

    • 1/4 Cup Nonfat Plain Yogurt

    • 2 Tablespoon Orange Juice

    • 2 Tablespoon  Orange Zest

    • ½  Teaspoon  Garam Masala

    • 1 Cup Grated Carrot

    • 1/2 Cup Chopped Celery

    • 6 Cups Chopped Roasted Sweet Potatoes***

    • 1 Cup Red Seedless Grapes, Halved

    • 1/3 Cup Chopped Dates

    • 1/4 Cup Chopped Toasted Walnuts

    Directions:

      • Mix mayonnaise, yogurt, orange juice, orange zest and Garam Masala in a small bowl to blend. (You can prepare this dressing up to a day ahead of time)

      • In a bowl toss the grated carrot, diced celery, sweet potatoes, halved grapes and chopped dates.

      • Add dressing to salad and toss. Sprinkle salad with walnuts and serve.

      ** To roast, spread the chopped potatoes on a baking sheet, toss with 2 Tablespoons olive oil, sprinkle with salt, pepper and 1 teaspoon garam masala.  Roast in a 400F oven for about 30 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are browned on the edges.

      Kitchen Smidgen – or creative lesson by Nancy Waldeck

      You can buy Garam Masala in the grocery store - or if you have a spice grinder its easy and delicious to make from scratch!

      Garam Masala

      Ingredients:

        • 2 Tablespoons Coriander Seeds

        • 1 Tablespoon  EACH, Fennel Seeds, Cumin Seeds, Black Peppercorns

        • 3 Green Cardamom Pods

        • 2 (3”) Cinnamon Sticks, broken

        • 1/2 Teaspoon  Whole Cloves

        • 1 Tablespoon  Ground Turmeric

        • 1/2 Teaspoon  Freshly Grated Nutmeg

        Directions:

          • Roast the coriander, fennel, cumin, peppercorns, cardamom, cinnamon and cloves together in a small dry skillet until they become fragrant.

          • Remove the spices and grind to a powder in a coffee mill. Stir in the turmeric and nutmeg.

          • Store in a sealed jar.

          Enjoy!