Thursday 21 June 2012

Taking five...and Sweet Potato, Mushroom and Spring Green Salad

May was a nice calm month but June a different beast. For some reason I've felt a little bit like I've been chasing my tail for the last two weeks.  Even worse for poor 'A' whose been away twice for meetings, whilst marking hundreds of exam papers, teaching, and doing the school timetable for the next academic year. I did my bit with the exam papers, adding up the marks. They are all finished now and stacked up ready to be posted.

So we can stop for a little bit and just look around...That's what I did on my way grocery shopping...stopped the car and stepped outside for a minute. Took a few deep breaths and drank in all that lovely green and blue, and those perfect clouds...Just for a few minutes but it was so good.

Back home I enjoyed the reflected sunlight filtering in through the trees, smelt the honeysuckle  through the window and sneaked into my little work room for a quick look at My Friend Maia...and was reminded that the secret for long life is "simplicity, work and enjoyment".   

It's all about balance...

Oh and then I made lunch.  After watching Maia it had to be green and yellow salad...

Well actually it was more orange than yellow...but next best thing....

Sweet Potato, Mushroom and Spring Green Salad


  • One sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • A few leaves of spring greens or spinach
  • One medium Portobello or a couple of small chestnut mushrooms sliced finely
  • Pistachio nuts
  • A little sumac
  • Sea salt and crushed black pepper
  • Olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Runny honey
  • Grainy Dijon mustard

  1. Cook the sweet potato in boiling salted water until tender.
  2. Meanwhile prepare a honey mustard dressing using the last four ingredients. Do this to taste I use less oil to vinegar ration than most recipes use because I'm not keen on an oily dressing.
  3. Drain the sweet potato, place in a dish and drizzle with a good amount of the dressing and leave to marinade for a little while.
  4. If using spring greens, remove the stalk and shred. Add to the sweet potato along with the mushrooms and pistachio nuts. Mix well.
  5. Sprinkle with  a little sumac and check to see if you need any seasoning or more dressing.

This is a nice earthy salad with a lovely tangy dressing.  The sumac adds a hint of lemony texture and the pistachios are a real treat. This would work really well with some nice salty feta cheese too...


  1. Don't you find Maia inspiring? Watching her gives me goals and the drive to continue to live right.
    Good for you for getting all of your school work accomplished, I am not even touching mine until July. The wee one is staying with me for the week starting Saturday while my daughter is traveling for work and as this will be the last time before they move we are going to do nothing but play. :)
    I love the ingredient list for your salad. I need to check the green house to see if any young greens are popping up so I can prepare one here. It has been so hot that all of your field lettuce has long since bolted. Oh well, for everything there is a season right?
    I hope you are having a lovely day Debby. I am off to take care of animals.

  2. I find it so calming to watch this video...Maia definitely is my current role model.

    I hope you have a wonderful time with your little sounds like a perfect week.

    Take care,

  3. I'm so glad you shared that maia video. Thats a beautiful approach to life. When I wasyounger,i just couldn't understand how people could want to just stay at home and do nothing, or just go to the park for "fresh air". But as I grow older, I'm starting to really appreciate all these little things, just taking time out, to stop and to breathe and to just appreciate the colours and sounds around me. The salad looks fab too, I didn't know you could eat mushrooms raw!

  4. I watch it a lot Shu Han.

    I first had a raw mushroom salad in Paris years and years ago staying with friends who lived on the outskirts of the city in a lovely little higgeldy piggeldy house. We ate supper in a kind of glass conservatory with a thunderstorm raging outside. I can't really remember what the food was except for the mushroom salad with really thinly sliced mushrooms in an amazing dressing.

  5. I hope that July brings with it more calm and time to sit and relax. What beautiful countryside you have to stop and enjoy. It is those little things like taking in the fresh air and the beauty of nature that mean so much isn't it:)

  6. Thank you Catherine...I hope so too. We are so fortunate to live close by to calming spaces. Thanks for coming over.