Nut-butter sauce adds healthful fat to hearty salad

Dinner with a friend who recently adopted a vegan diet introduced us to chickpeas as “sloppy Joes.” Unlike the lentils she first tried as a meat substitute in her favorite filling recipe, the chickpeas lent a firmer texture to the mixture.

While I’m a fan of chickpeas in all manner of curries, stews and other cooked preparations, I still enjoy them as a salad component and welcome new combinations beyond the classic Greek salad. One of my favorites is a recipe posted a coupe of winters ago using fingerling potatoes and collard greens.

Similar is this recipe from Tribune News Service sweet potatoes and arugula with a creamy almond-butter sauce, a good way for vegans to add more healthful fats to their diets. Peanut, cashew or sunflower butters also could be used.

Tribune News Service photo

Sweet Potato Medallions With Almond Sauce and Chickpea Salad

4 small (4-ounce) sweet potatoes

1/4 cup creamy, natural almond butter

3 1/2 tablespoons warm water

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1 (15-ounce) can unsalted chickpeas, rinsed and drained

5 ounces baby arugula

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

Prick the potatoes all over with a fork; place on a microwave-safe plate and microwave at high just until tender, for about 5 minutes. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds.

In a bowl, whisk together the almond butter, 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice and 3 ½ tablespoons warm water. Set aside.

Brush potato slices on 1 side with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook potato slices, oiled-sides down, until golden-brown, or for about 2 minutes. Be careful not to burn medallions.

In a large bowl, combine the chickpeas, arugula, salt, pepper, remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 tablespoon oil. Divide chickpea mixture among 4 plates; top with sweet potato slices. Drizzle with almond-butter sauce.

Makes 4 servings.

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  • Blog Author

    Sarah Lemon

    Sarah Lemon covers the Rogue Valley’s food scene with an enthusiasm that rivals her love of cooking. Her blog mixes culinary musings and milestones with tips and recipes you won’t find in the Mail Tribune’s weekly A la Carte section. When ... Read Full
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