Not long ago, I wrote about my efforts to counter weekend summer indulgences with wholesome salads. I adapted this recipe from one printed in a recent issue of Style at Home magazine. I omitted the lentils, substituted different vegetables, and swapped sambal oelek in for harissa paste. I have to say, I liked this way better than the salade niçoise. Sweet and tangy flavours get me every time. And as someone who’s pretty liberal with sauces, marinades and dressings, this packed a lot of punch without an excess of dressing. Brad gave this an enthusiastic two thumbs (vegetarians, take note).
To make dressing, whisk together 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, 3T apple cider vinegar, 2T honey, 2T orange juice, 1T Russian-style mustard, 1T orange zest, 2 tsp sambal oelek, 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground cardamom and 1/2 tsp salt.
Peel and dice 2 sweet potatoes into 1" cubes. Toss with 2/3 of the dressing. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drain 1 can of chickpeas and toss with remaining dressing. Spread in a single layer on another baking sheet. Wrap 3 beets in foil. Roast sweet potatoes, chickpeas and beets at 375F for 40 minutes.
While potatoes and chickpeas are roasting, cook 1 cup dry couscous according to package directions. Boil 2 cobs of corn for 2-3 minutes. Let cool, then cut corn away from cob. Finely slice 3 green onions.
Once beets have cooked, remove skin and dice in 1/2" cubes.
In a large serving bowl, gently toss couscous, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, beets, corn and green onion with 1/2 cup of pine nuts. Serve warm, and spinkle mint leaves over top before serving.