A SWEET POTATO SALAD PERFECT FOR MEMORIAL DAY FESTIVITIES
Just in time for your Memorial Day picnic, Chef Linda from Catskill Animal Sanctuary will show us how to make a magical potato salad with a Caribbean twist, perfect for sharing with people who wonder what vegans eat! Sweet potatoes, peanuts, and black beans are some of the ingredients that will make everyone who eats this fresh, seasonal salad swoon with delight!
CHEF LINDA’S JOURNEY
Linda Soper-Kolton came to Catskill Animal Sanctuary in 2012 as a guest chef, intending to teach Compassionate Cuisine cooking classes for a season and then return to her vegetarian and vegan café in Fairfield, Connecticut. Lured by the magic of the sanctuary and the urgency of the mission, Linda stayed to lead and grow the culinary program, inspiring and educating with love, patience, and delicious food. Six years later, she continues to cook, teach, write, and kiss pigs.
Unlike many chefs, Linda did not grow up at the knee of a family matriarch in the kitchen. Instead, her early memories of mealtime included mashed potatoes made with milk powder and potato flakes, Friday’s clean-out-the-fridge “spaghetti surprise,” and a lot of liver. Linda learned to cook out of sheer necessity. In the humble kitchen of her first apartment, Linda spent nights baking, roasting, and simmering for roommates, co-workers, and anyone else she could find. With “food is love” as her mantra, cooking and feeding became her way of nurturing and connecting with others.
In midlife, she fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a chef when she graduated from the Natural Gourmet Institute chef’s training program. Combining her chef’s training with certification as a holistic health coach from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and certification in plant-based nutrition from the Center for Nutrition Studies and eCornell, Linda is driven to love and influence others through compassionate, plant-based eating. When she’s not in the kitchen creating, she’s probably looking for her glasses.
SWEET POTATO SALAD ALL YOUR FRIENDS WILL LOVE
This Sweet Potato Salad is like a tropical breeze that beckons you to relax and linger in your lounge chair. This festive warm-weather dish invites you to slow down and dine on island time so you can enjoy the vibrant colors, bright flavors, and playful textures. In one mouthful, you’ll taste the caramel soulfulness of the roasted sweet potatoes, in another, the spiciness of the cayenne and garlic, then the crunch of the salty peanuts. Wait, what’s that? Oh yes! The sweet, fresh, creamy burst of corn. Perfection!
This is one of the many delicious recipes in Linda’s Compassionate Cuisine cookbook: order yours at casanctuary.org/cookbook !
Caribbean Sweet Potato Black Bean Salad
- Sweet Potatoes
- 2 large sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes, about 4 cups
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 large cloves garlic minced, about 2 teaspoons
- 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 15.5-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained, about 1 ½ cups
- 1 cup fresh cooked or uncooked or frozen and thawed corn kernels
- 1 cup roasted salted peanuts, roughly chopped (or substitute sunflower or pumpkin seeds)
- 2 scallions sliced thinly on the diagonal, about ¼ cup
- Chopped cilantro or parsley for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Place sweet potatoes on the baking tray in a pile. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle with cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, and salt. Toss together with your hands then arrange in a single layer on the tray. Roast for about 20 minutes, until fork-tender.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the lime juice, oil, lemon juice, syrup, garlic, mustard, and salt. When potatoes are done, set aside to cool for about 10 minutes then place them in the bowl with the dressing. Add black beans, corn, scallions, and peanuts. Toss to combine. Garnish with fresh herbs. Serve immediately or chill before serving.
KICK-OFF YOUR MEMORIAL WEEKEND WITH THIS SWEET POTATO SALAD
I hope you give this salad a try for your holiday weekend festivities. I think it would be a big hit with your vegan and non-vegan friends alike. If you decide to make it, be sure to take a photo of your finished dish and tag @JaneUnChainedNews on Instagram. Leave a comment here on the website and let us know if you liked it. If you are looking for other plant-based recipes to try, be sure to visit the #LunchBreakLIVE page where we have a ton to choose from. Until next time…keep cookin’!
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Donna Dennison is an UnchainedTV writer, graphic designer, video editor, and IG contributor. Donna is also a creative in the film industry.