Roasted Sweet Potato, Pear, and Grape Salad with Blueberry Dressing
I recently went back to my home in Philadelphia a few days ago, and was reunited with family :). One of the most important people in my life is my sister, and she wanted to help me create a recipe to share, so that’s what we did! In this post I will be sharing with you my sister and I’s creation of a sweet potato, pear, and roasted grape salad with a homemade blueberry dressing! It was so good that my whole family requested to have it made again!
For the recipe, I looked around my house for simple ingredients that I thought would pair well together. I found some organic sweet potatoes, some fruit in my fridge, and a can of chickpeas. I chose to use grapes and pears, and then bake all of these ingredients together in the oven to allow the flavors to really pop out.
One thing I really wanted to incorporate into this salad was turmeric! I have recently learned about all of the health benefits turmeric has to offer, and I want to start incorporating this powerful spice into more of my diet. Turmeric contains an ingredient called curcumin that has very powerful health properties. Curcumin is a natural anti-inflammatory compound, it dramatically increases the antioxidant capacity of the body, it boosts brain function, it has been shown to lower the risk of heart disease, and there have even been studies that show it can aid in treating depression. Crazy right! However, one thing you need to do when cooking with turmeric is to also include black pepper. The compounds in black pepper enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2000%! So tumeric and black pepper go hand in hand.
I usually pick spices for a recipe by simply smelling them and picking what I think will combine well. So for this roasted sweet potato, pear, and grape salad I chose to use turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon, and ground cloves.
I only used the spices to coat the sweet potatoes and chickpeas (not the fruit). I also used a tiny tiny bit of oil to help the spices stick to the potatoes and chickpeas. I generally do not like to use a lot of oil in my cooking because I tend to not feel as great after eating an extremely oily meal. Once the potatoes and chickpeas were coated, I placed them and the cut grapes and pears onto a baking sheet and baked them for about 40 minutes. (The smells that filled the kitchen were amazing!)
Originally I was going to use a store bought dressing for this recipe, but as the other ingredients were baking, my sister had a great idea to make a blueberry dressing from scratch! Her idea was to make a blueberry reduction with some fresh blueberries that she found in the fridge. To sweeten the dressing, I suggested she use a little bit of coconut sugar, agave, and some orange extract. My thought was that without using too much sweetener or extra flavoring, the natural blueberry flavor would really come out and compliment the salad. (I was right!). This dressing was so good and extremely easy to make! I will definitely be incorporating dressings like this with other fruits and using them in all of my salads!
So, without further ado, follow along to see exactly how I made this delicious salad! There is a video to watch at the end of this post too that shows me and my sister making the salad as well :).
To start off this delicious roasted sweet potato, pear, and grape salad, I cut the sweet potato into 1/2 inch cubes.
Then, I combined the chickpeas and sweet potato into a large bowl. I added in the turmeric, cinnamon, black pepper, cloves, and oil, and mixed until everything was well coated with the spices.
I set the sweet potato and chickpea mixture aside, and moved on to halving the grapes and cutting the pear into 1/2 inch cubes.
Next, I spread out the sweet potato and chickpea mixture, grapes, and pear onto a tinfoil lined baking sheet. I baked this for 40 minutes at 400 degrees.
For the blueberry dressing, I used 1 cup of blueberries, 1 TBSP of coconut sugar, 1 cup of water, 1 tsp agave, and 1/8 tsp of orange extract. I boiled the blueberries and water first, then added in the coconut sugar, agave, and orange extract. I used a potato masher to smash the blueberries down and let them release all of their delicious flavors! Once thickened, I poured the dressing into a glass mason jar and let it cool before serving :).
To serve this roasted sweet potato, pear, and grape salad, I put the veggies and fruit over a bed of spinach, topped it with the dressing, and added some hemp seeds for additional nutrition and flavor!
Find the detailed ingredients and instructions below, and be sure to watch the recipe video here, or watch below! Let me know if you make this recipe and how you liked it! 🙂
Roasted Sweet Potato, Pear, and Grape Salad With Blueberry Dressing
- 1 medium sweet potato
- 1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
- 2 cups red and green grapes
- 1 medium pear
- 1 bag spinach
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1 tsp oil of choice
- hemp seeds for topping (optional)
Blueberry Dressing Ingredients
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
- 1 cup water
- 1/8 cup coconut sugar
- 1 tsp agave
- 1/8 tsp orange extract
Peel and cut the sweet potato into approximately 1/2 inch cubes.
Combine sweet potato cubes and chickpeas into a large bowl.
Add turmeric, black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, and oil to sweet potato and chickpeas. Mix until well coated, and set aside.
Halve the grapes.
Cut pear into approximately 1/2 inch cubes.
On a tinfoil lined baking sheet, spread out sweet potato and chickpeas, halved grapes, and pear cubes. Bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes, or until sweet potatoes begin to brown and grapes and pears begin to caramelize.
For the blueberry dressing, in a medium sized pot, put blueberries and water over medium heat.
Once blueberries begin to release their color and lose their shape, add in the coconut sugar, agave, and orange extract.
Mash the mixture with a potato masher and let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes while covered.
When blueberry dressing is the desired thickness, (simmer longer to make the dressing thicker), remove pot from stove and pour dressing into a glass container. Let cool before serving.
To assemble salad, place sweet potato, chickpea, grape, and pear mixture overtop of a bed of spinach. Pour blueberry dressing on top and finish by sprinkling some hemp seeds. Enjoy! 🙂