I don’t do a lot of sponsored posts on the blog and I definitely don’t let anyone write for my blog for profit. My blog is my place. My place to to write, to cook, to make mistakes and share them. When BrightFarms approached me for a sponsored post, I was ecstatic. I had noticed their brand at my local Pick and Save months ago and was thrilled to see a local option in the produce section.

 

BrightFarms produces greens and distributes them locally. It means you can buy greens that are not traveling far from where you live. As a huge supporter of CSAs, I am also a huge supporter of Bright Farms. Fresher is always better and local is always fresher. So to do a post for them seemed like a natural extension of the blog that allowed me to showcase a brand I already liked without compromising myself as a writer.

The Salad

BrightFarms asked me to come up with a salad using their greens. I was thrilled because I love creating new salads, the hardest part was choosing my ingredients. It came down to fate as I decided to use what I could find. Sweet crunchy honey crisp apples, salty toasted walnuts, sweet dried cherries, roasted sweet potatoes, tender spinach, and peppery arugula. 

This salad is what I all a special occasion salad. A salad to pull out for guests or at a holiday gathering. It involves a few steps, but the result is definitely worth it. 

Sweet Potato, Apple, Cherry Salad
Sweet, crunchy, salty, and tender. This salad is the perfect extension of fall flavors and textures. 

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Prep Time
35 min

Cook Time
5 min

Total Time
40 min

Prep Time
35 min

Cook Time
5 min

Total Time
40 min

Ingredients
1 medium sweet potato cut into [1/2] inch cubes
Grapeseed oil
Garlic pepper
[1/2] cup raw walnuts
1-2 TB butter
[1/2] tsp salt
1 honey crisp apple cut into matchsticks
Spinach
Arugula
Dried cherries
crumbled goat cheese or blue cheese, optional

Instructions
Preheat oven to 425 dg(F). Line a baking sheet with foil. Toss cubed sweet potato with grapeseed oil and garlic pepper (or seasoning of your choice). Bake sweet potato cubes for 20 minutes.
While sweet potato is baking, heat butter in a frying pan. Add walnuts and salt. Toss to coat. Stir frequently as walnuts toast. When they turn golden brown, they are done.
Toss together all ingredients. Serve immediately.

Notes
Personally, I don’t think the salad needs a dressing. If you would like something, keep it light and basic like a drizzle of oil and balsamic vinegar. No creamy anything or strong flavors. Taste the flavors of the season!
If you are okay with dairy, this salad would be great with crumbled goat cheese or blue cheese. The heat from the potatoes would melt the cheese and it would be delightful.
I chose to use grapeseed oil because it has a high burning point meaning it can withstand the heat of the roasting in the recipe. You could also use another oil of your choice.

Badger Girl Learns to Cook by Kimberly Aime http://learntocookbadgergirl.com/

I love adding warm elements to salad like the roasted sweet potatoes and the walnuts. They make the salad seem a lot less like a salad and more like a side dish. If you want to make potatoes ahead of time, that’s great, but I would recommend heating them a little before you throw them on the salad. 

I love tossing the sweet potatoes with Wildtree’s Rancher Steak Rub which is essentially a garlicky pepper mix. I would suggest using a salty or savory seasoning to contrast the sweetness of the potatoes. Other great seasonings are Chile powder and smoked paprika. And of course, salt. 

Now that we talked about the actual salad, let’s talk about how we can change it. First, I would suggest looking for cubed sweet potatoes at the store and if they don’t have that, try cubed butternut squash. The squash may take 5-10 additional minutes to roast, but it’s sweetness would be similar to the sweet potatoes. 

Don’t have dried cherries? I would have actually preferred to have dried cranberries or pomegranate seeds. The tartness would be a great contrast to the sweetness of the potatoes. 

Don’t have walnuts? Try sliced almonds, pecans, or even pumpkin seeds. Something that will add a salty crunch. 

Let’s talk about the greens. I love spinach. LOVE it. And it’s in season now. Look for locally grown baby spinach and pair it with peppery arugula or a spring mix. Make sure to wash your greens before you eat them. 

Alright, now is the fun part! You can enter below to WIN a $25 gift card to a store that sells BrightFarm greens. Comment below and tell me your favorite fall salad ingredient. On Friday, I will randomly select someone to receive the gift card. 

 

 

 

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