Candied Walnut Salad has to be one of my favourite salads. It’s got that beautiful freshness from the greens, a vibrant contrast in colour with the sweet potato and then it’s got the rich flavour of the feta cheese masked by the sweetness of the candied walnuts and then all brought together with the tangy dressing. D-E-L-ICIOUS!
This salad goes great with almost anything. We last had it with a simple piece of steak and it was it needed.
It was also a big hit at Christmas, I had to make a second one for our boxing day ‘leftovers’ lunch. So much for it being just leftovers!
The only downside to this salad would be that it’s probably not as healthy as you’d hope…and that there’s never any left (ok, so maybe two downsides). The candied walnuts just ruin that component. Luckily for you health nuts out there, I have another option in the notes below.
Oh, and feel free to change out the sweet potato. I find that beetroot works really well too and I’d say you’d get a similar result with the use of roast pumpkin.
If you do decide to give the beetroot ago, try using a soft goats cheese instead of the feta. Because let’s be honest, those two together are just to die for!
- 700gm Sweet Potato (1 ½ x medium sized potatoes)
- 150gm Bag Rocket & Baby Spinach
- 100gm Feta Cheese (broken up into small chunks)
- 90gm Sugar plain
- 2 tsp Orange Zest
- 1 cup Walnuts
- Za’atar spice blend (Optional)
- Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper
- 2 tbsp Verjuice
- 2 tbsp White Wine Vinegar
- 1/4 cup Olive oil
- 2 1/2 tbsp Honey
- 1 tbsp French Mustard
- 2 tsp Seeded Mustard
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Pre-heat the oven 180 degrees C.
- Peel & cut the sweet potato into 2cm cubes & place onto a baking tray.
- Lightly coat the potato with olive oil, salt & pepper & Za’atar spice
- Place the potato into the oven and bake for 25-30 min, or until soft.
- CANDIED WALNUTS - Place a small frying pan onto the stove on medium heat. Allow to heat up for a few minutes. Meanwhile, get out a sheet of baking paper ready to put the hot candied walnuts on.
- Pour the sugar into the pan and cook until you see it starting to melt around the edges. About 1-3 minutes.
- Next place the walnuts into the pan with the orange Zest & about ½ tsp of salt, mixing them constantly to coat them in the sugar as it melts. This will take about 5 minutes or until the sugar starts to brown on the bottom of the pan. Transfer to the baking paper & allow to cool.
- THE DRESSING - Combine the Verjuice, Vinegar, Olive Oil, Mustards, Honey & Salt & Pepper in a jar or shaker. Shake so that ingredients are mixed well & taste, you may need more honey or mustard depending on what your tastes are.
- Once the sweet potato is cooked remove from the oven to cool.
- Put salad mix, potato, feta cheese, & walnuts into a salad bowl and mix with the dressing.
- Toss to serve and enjoy with your favourite cut of meat!
- To turn this into a healthier salad you can bake the walnuts without the sugar. Simply toss with 1tbsp of orange juice, 2tsp orange zest, 1 tbsp olive oil & salt to taste add to a 180degC oven and bake for 5-10min. Make sure you keep an eye on them because they'll be done within no time!