It’s a been a week…a really long week.
In the past seven days, I’ve managed to workout regularly, host a brunch for friends, complete a big freelance writing project, start graphic design school, get in a fight with Mama E (<- this never happens), survive a chaotic week at work, get fitted for a retainer, spend the weekend at three different grocery stores offering free samples of Salad Girl organic salad dressings, go on a date with a boy and prepare for another TV spot*.
So…maybe I don’t usually eat bacon or want to solve my problems by drinking glass after glass of prickly pear margaritas or neglect my email inboxes or wait five days between posting on my blog, but when its that kind of a week, you kind of just have to.
Eat the bacon!
Drink the prickly pear margaritas!
Ignore your email!
Eat nothing but white carbs for every meal!
Don’t shower if you’d rather sleep those extra 15 minutes!
Wear swimsuit bottoms as underwear if you need to!
Because that’s life!
I used to complain a lot about being so busy (you know, like here or here or here or here). Lately, I’ve been reminding myself that being busy probably means I’m just living life to the extreme…surfing along on its crazy tidal wave dodging unwelcome mouthfuls of salty water, prickly coral reefs and shark attacks. It’s not sustainable for forever, but for now, I’ll survive.
In fact, after graphic design class on Thursday, I went over to my friend Katie’s house to watch Project Runway: All-Stars (Team Mondo and Rami) and made her this sweet potato salad sans bacon and pecans. And because I decided to spend time with my friend even though I was tired, I was gifted the suggestion of adding bacon and pecans to this salad to make it even better.
And it sooooooo was.
Please take this as a reminder to always accept recipe suggestions from those who eat your food and enjoy your own crazy, busy hectic life.
Every single bacon or non-bacon-filled bite.
Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Maple-Mustard Vinaigrette
Prep time: 30 minutes
4 small- to medium-sized sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 T olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
1 (5-oz) bag baby spinach
5 slices bacon*
1/2 cup chopped roasted, salted pecans
salt + pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1 T Dijon or stoneground mustard
1/2 T maple syrup
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1 t white wine vinegar
salt + pepper, to taste
Chopped parsley + pecans, for garnish
*to make recipe vegetarian/vegan, simply omit bacon
Preheat oven to 45o degrees.
On a baking sheet, toss sweet potato cubes, 1 T olive oil and salt + pepper. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium heat, saute onions in 1 T olive oil. Toss occasionally, letting onion become golden and caramelized. Toss in spinach to wilt. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. In the same saucepan, fry bacon until golden brown, about 4 to 6 minutes per side. Drain excess fat on a paper towel. Once cooled, break each slice into 3 to 4 pieces.
To make vinaigrette, whisk together all ingredients.
To finish, toss roasted sweet potatoes, onion + spinach mixture, bacon pieces, chopped pecans and maple-mustard vinaigrette in a large bowl. Garnish with parsley and pecans.
Makes 4 servings
*Attention Madison readers! I’ll be on the CBS News 3 Morning Show tomorrow morning at 6:45am teaching the greater Madison area how to “Build A Better Bowl of Oatmeal.” Stay tuned!