Food Matters | Black Bean and Sweet Potato Salad

Have you ever been so focused in your work that when you finally take a minute to consciously breathe and step away from what you’re doing that you’re overtaken by fatigue and hunger?   Now there’s a bigger problem lurking.  You open the fridge to realize that you’re so hungry you don’t know what you want to eat because EVERYTHING sound delicious!

Tonight was one of those nights.  Yet, lucky for me, today was cooking day for my private clients so I had an abundance of prepared meals waiting.   The hardest question was “Which one do I have a taste for?”   Black Bean and Sweet Potato Salad, Grilled Eggplant Salad, leftover appetizers from a weekend party (White Bean, Feta and Mint spread or Roasted Artichoke and Green Olive spread), fresh mozzarella with farmer’s market salami, Black Bean Burgers with a Fresh Tomato Salad, or maybe Greek Quinoa and Lentil Salad with Lemon Oregano Dressing.   Yikes!   I quickly realized this wasn’t a time to ponder, just pick one and enjoy!

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Salad was the winner.   This dish is one of my favorite as the flavors are quite unique.  My first time making the salad I was skeptical of combining Mexican seasoning with sweet potatoes.  It’s an amazing combination!

A few prep notes: roasting the sweet potatoes takes about 20 minutes, then you need to allow for a bit of cool-down time.   If you can make the salad in the morning, you’ll appreciate the flavors that develop as it marinates.

This dish can be served as a meal in itself or as a side salad to your favorite protein.   Tonight I enjoyed it as a meal.

What you eat matters, so let me give you a peek as to why this dish is so great.   The sweet potatoes are rich in beta-carotene (the bright orange color), and offers significant antioxidant protection for the skin…perfect for these summer days.  Black beans are high in fiber which is excellent benefit for your cardiovascular system by helping to reduce cholesterol and benefits your digestive system by stimulating movement of food through your gut.  Limes are rich in vitamin C and have antibiotic properties, boosting your immune system.  Extra Virgin Olive Oil is rich in Omega-9 fatty acids and polyphenols (unique antioxidants) to help your heart.