My take on the traditional potato salad pairs the natural sweetness of cinnamon with the tanginess of Dijon mustard.
Letting the salad set up in the refrigerator for as long as 24 hours prior to serving allows the flavors to mingle perfectly. Cinnamon is one of humanity’s oldest known spices, dating back to at least 2,700 BC. Prized for its medicinal properties in ancient China, it is now used the world over. Cinnamon is an excellent source of manganese, which helps grow strong bones, maintains skin integrity, helps to control blood sugar and protects against free radical damage.
Thaw and shell edamame. Dice sweet potatoes. Grate ginger. Juice lime. Thinly slice onion and celery. Finely chop dill.
In a medium saucepan with a steamer basket and 1 inch of water, steam sweet potatoes until tender, 10 – 15 minutes. Allow to cool.
Whisk together lime juice, mustard, ginger, cinnamon, salt and pepper.
Combine onion, edamame, celery and dill in a large bowl. Stir in sweet potatoes and toss with dressing.
Cover and refrigerate at least two, and up to 24 hours.
Preparation: 20 minutes, plus 2 hours to set
Kale is one of the healthiest vegetables, and you can’t go wrong with the other nutrient-rich ingredients this salad.
This salad is sweet and tangy, providing a wealth of taste sensations as well as an abundance of vitamins, minerals, fiber and protein. You might be surprised to see maple syrup included here, but don’t be, this natural sweetener is a powerful antioxidant, providing B vitamins, and minerals such as zinc and potassium. Black-eyed peas are a good source of soluble fiber, potassium, folate, manganese and beta-carotene.
Chop cashews and toast in a dry skillet over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and set aside.
If using dried black-eyed peas, cook according to package directions to make two cups cooked beans. Drain, rinse and set aside to cool. Substitute drained and rinsed canned beans, if you prefer.
Mince garlic and grate ginger. Whisk together, along with olive oil, lime juice, turmeric, maple syrup, cumin, salt, and cayenne pepper. Set aside.
Chop dates into small pieces, being mindful of the pits. Shred enough carrots to make 1½ cups. Chop kale, including stems. Chop cilantro. Peel and dice avocado.
In a medium bowl, combine the carrots, black-eyed peas, dried dates, cashews, kale and cilantro. Mix in dressing and gently toss until everything is evenly coated. Toss in avocado and cheese. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Preparation: 45 minutes
Molasses adds a note of complexity to this bright, beautiful salad.
Always a hit with the family, feel free to adjust the amount of chile peppers accordingly. Chile peppers owe their heat to capsaicin. Capsaicin is being studied as a treatment for sensory nerve fiber disorders. While I don’t often recommend nightshades such as chile peppers and tomatoes, in moderation, they do offer plenty of health benefits. If your body does not react well to them, by all means, leave them out. This tasty salad will still be delicious!
Seed and chop chile peppers. Peel and roughly chop garlic and ginger. Chop cilantro. Cut basil into ribbons. Thinly slice onion crosswise. Slice cucumber and tomatoes. Cut steak slices across the grain. Juice limes. Tear romaine leaves into bite-sized pieces.
In a blender or a food processor, pulse peppers, garlic and ginger until finely chopped. Add tamari, fish sauce, molasses, cilantro and lime juice; process until well combined. Separate ⅓ cup of mixture for salad dressing, set aside.
Whisk reserved sauce with sesame oil to make salad dressing.
In a large bowl, toss romaine, basil, onion, cucumber and tomatoes with salad dressing.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté steak over medium-high heat for 1 minute per side and toss with remaining sauce.
Divide salad among dishes, top with steak slices.
Preparation: 20 minutes
This dish is visually appealing and very nourishing.
In addition to antioxidants, each cup of black beans provides 15 grams of protein and fiber. Black beans also contain small amounts of omega-3 fatty acids about 3 times as much as other beans. The cilantro not only adds depth to the flavor, but also has been shown to aid digestion and sooth inflammation. The cumin enhances the taste of the salad while promoting the assimilation of other foods. You can also substitute or add a variety of other ingredients such as dark green leafy vegetables and scallions.
Rinse and drain quinoa and beans. In a saucepan, bring broth to a boil, add quinoa, cover and simmer on low heat until all the water is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 10 – 15 minutes. Allow to cool.
Peel and chop avocado. Grate carrots. Chop dates and cilantro. Juice limes.
In a small bowl, combine lime juice, vinegar, cumin, oil, and salt; whisk.
In a large bowl, mix cooked quinoa, beans, avocado, carrots, dates and cilantro. Pour dressing over quinoa mixture, sprinkle in crumbled goat cheese, toss gently.
Dish onto plates, enjoy!
Preparation: 30 minutes
This lovely, bright salad is a great introduction to the peppery and lovely watercress.
Watercress is a humble, cruciferous, aquatic green leafy vegetable eaten since ancient times. Long considered food for the lower classes, it has only recently regained popularity due to its high nutritional value. Watercress provides numerous health benefits, including cancer prevention, blood pressure regulation and healthy bone support. It is rich in vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, iron, calcium and folate. Among other benefits, an increase in folate consumption has been shown to improve cognition and verbal fluency – good news for prevention of cognitive decline!