I’m back!!!!!!! Sheesh, I hope I do not move for at least another 5 years, because that move completely wore me out. Don’t get me wrong; the sunshine, having my own bathroom, and amazing beautiful new kitchen are great consolations for the grueling 3 days it took to get it all situated. Oh, and did I mention I haven’t had internet or cable for a week? Hense why I have been missing!
Now that I am back, let me tell you about the fantastic salad that I made the other night. I know what your probably thinking… another salad. How exciting could it be? Well, I think it was fantastic, and it encompassed a few of my favorite foods which I typically don’t mix together: sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, and feta cheese (everything is better with a little feta!).
One of my favorite things about fall is roasting vegetables. I eat sweet potatoes all year long, but there is something about a warm oven roasting a pan of veggies and combining them with other cool, fresh ingredients that is comforting, warming, and puts a smile on my face. I love mixing temperature when preparing a dish as well as textures. I think a little crunch can add an extra something to a dish that would otherwise be bland or a shocking hot vegetable on a bed of cool greens can intrigue your taste buds.
For this salad, I combined sweet potato with fresh brussel sprouts in a roasting pan on 375 degrees. I prefer roasting at a lower temperature, rather that upwards of 400 or 425. I think the vegetables cook through better and brown at a slower rate, giving the inside plenty of time to soften. The sweet potatoes turned a light golden brown, and the brussels got crispy on the edges of the leaves.
My protein of choices was a lean chicken breast, which I seasoned with garlic powder, dried thyme, basil, and oregano.
I chose feta cheese due to its salty, strong flavor. I don’t typically use salt when I cook, so choosing a salty cheese still allows the flavor without adding the seasoning.
I hope that you try a roasted vegetable salad as the weather turns cool and enjoy and the flavors that fall has to offer! Choose vegetables that you enjoy, and don’t be afraid to combine things that you may not normally combine. Enjoy, and happy cooking!
- 1 medium sweet potato; diced into about 1/2 x 1/2in. cubes
- 1/2-3/4 cup fresh brussel sprouts, whole
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- veg seasonings: garlic poder, chili powder, paprika, a pinch of dried thyme
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 2 tbsp crumbled feta cheese
- 3oz chicken breast
- chicken seasonings: garlic powder, dried thyme, dried basil, dried oregano (be careful with the oregano; it can be overpowering!)
- 2 Tbsp of your favorite light dressing (I used a light roasted red pepper)
Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees. Toss your cubed sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts in about 2 Tbsp of olive oil and seasonings. If you prefer a different seasoning blend, feel free to switch it up. Also prepare your chicken breast at this time by spraying it with a little cooking spray on each side and seasoning the face up side. You can cook both the veg and the chicken at the same time, just make sure to use separate trays. Cook your veg for about 25 minutes, flipping the vegetables 1-2 times in between cooking. Check your chicken at 25 minutes; if cooked through, remove from the heat. If not, cook for about 5 more minutes. Once your chicken and vegetables have been removed from the oven, allow the chicken to rest while you prepare your greens, feta, and place your vegetables atop the greens. Slice your chicken into thin strips and place on top of the vegetables. Lastly, dress with a light dressing of your choice. Enjoy!