settling back in October 16, 2013

Roasted Sweet Potato & Black Lentil Salad

7,000 miles. That’s roughly how far I’ve traveled between posts. It’s been an amazing time – what seems like an endless session of most-perfect-days-ever. Two weddings to attend, our honeymoon to get to and, yes, a wedding of our own. All of which I’ll be sharing here on the blog soon – I got a new camera as a wedding gift from my husband (!!!) and it was a huge treat to be able to take it on our epic cross country (and multi-country) journey and have the time to use it.

Walking back in the house earlier this week after being gone for seven straight days, I’m ready to get settled back in. Right now, that means cooking at home, working on some personal creative projects, and traveling a bit more for work. The food and wine we’ve consumed the last three weeks has been nothing short of stupendous…but I’m also looking forward to eating a little cleaner and a little more simply.

This salad was something I made my first day back in the kitchen – something easy to nosh on while I start unpacking suitcases and sorting through the thousands of photos we took. It was so tasty that I just wanted to get here and give you the recipe. This is great served at room temperature and it’s vegan…so if it sits out for a bit (while you go back and eat a spoonful of it here or there), there’s no cheese or dairy to get funky. I kept it simple and added some scallion for sharpness and celery for crunch – and I’m a sucker for celery leaves – but add whatever you think works here: some tiny diced sweet peppers, toasted pepitas or some fresh cilantro.

Roasted Sweet Potato & Black Lentil Salad – serves 2 as an ample main course salad or 4 as a side dish

  • 1 large sweet potato – peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil – divided
  • kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • a dash of smoked paprika
  • 2 cups black lentils – you can substitute brown lentils if you’d like
  • 2 scallions – white and green parts thinly sliced
  • 1 large stalk of celery – diced and leaves reserved (if your celery comes with the leaves still on!)
  • 1 tbsp. honey or light agave nectar
  • juice of 1 medium lemon

- Preheat the oven to 350F. In a roasting pan or baking sheet, toss the cubed sweet potato together with 1 tbsp. of olive oil, a bit of salt and pepper and the dash of smoked paprika. Roast until tender and slightly caramelized – for me, this was 25 minutes. Once roasted, allow to cool to room temperature.

- While the sweet potatoes roast, cook your lentils. In a medium pot with a lid, combine the 2 cups of black lentils with 3 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil for 2 to 3 minutes then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until tender but NOT soft. For me (this depends on the age of your lentils and the oomph your burner has), this was 25 minutes. Drain into a fine mesh colander and allow to cool to room temperature.

- To assemble the salad: In a large mixing bowl, combine the lentils, sweet potatoes, chopped scallions, diced celery and celery leaves (if using). Once combined, drizzle over the remaining 1 tbsp. olive oil & honey and squeeze the lemon juice into the bowl. Combine well to make sure everything get dressed. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. This salad is great at room temperature but can be kept overnight and brought back to room temp to serve.

Comments

Mallory @ Because I Like Chocolate Oct 16, 2013 05:10 pm

Congrats on everything! Sounds like you need some time to relax and get back into everyday life!

DessertForTwo Oct 16, 2013 06:10 pm

Welcome back, Tami! We missed you (but we’re also so happy for you too!)

Love thus easy salad!

Lynn Oct 16, 2013 09:10 pm

Congratulations and I’m glad to see you back. Especially with such a yummy salad to share.

Meghan Oct 16, 2013 10:10 pm

I always appreciate your use of celery. Congrats to you and Mike!

Erika Oct 17, 2013 10:10 am

Welcome back and mad congrats to you!! I really want to make this and use it for tacos.. call me crazy .

bellingtonfarm Oct 17, 2013 10:10 am

Omigosh !! This looks amazing !!! Would make a GREAT dish for my vegetarian daughter this Thanksgiving! Can’t wait to try this!!

Adri Oct 17, 2013 11:10 am

My, but you have certainly been on the move! This dish looks beautiful, a lovely welcome to Fall. This is my first visit to your site, and it is glorious!

Christy @ My Invisible Crown Oct 17, 2013 12:10 pm

Loved seeing all your IG pics. It looks like y’all had a wonderful time. Let me know if you’re in town anytime soon. We can have a drink and you tell me ALL about it. Congrats pretty lady!

ciaochowbambina Oct 18, 2013 11:10 am

Congratulations! This is a very exciting time for you!! This salad looks awesome…I’ll be making it this weekend! Thank you!

Sonja Oct 19, 2013 10:10 pm

This is a gorgeous photo! The recipe sounds delish (I’m a huge sucker for sweet potatoes).

[...] trip will be epic.  Her husband (heeee – I love saying that!) told us to bring out our inner bad ass out on the trip, so I am [...]

Susan Hillyer Nov 3, 2013 02:11 pm

Beautiful recipe. I’m very glad I ran in to you today. What a talent. I’m a newbie. The next post I’m reading of yours is how to blog responsibly. My best. Susan

Anonymous Jan 8, 2014 09:01 am

Delicious. 2 cups of lentils was more than I used with the salad.