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Spinach Salad with Orange-Soy Dressing, Candied Almonds and Sweet Potato Crouton

What you need: 

Orange-Soy Dressing:
1/4 freshly squeezed orange juice
1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1/4 cup safflower or other light oil (I used hemp, delicious and nutritious!) Candied Almonds:
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 1/2 teaspoon agave nectar (or brown rice syrup)
1 teaspoon or so cooking oil
salt Sweet Potato Croutons:
1 medium sweet potato, cubed
1/2 teaspoon each basil, oregano, chili powder
1/4 teaspoon each mustard powder, onion
powder, garlic powder
Cooking oil Salad:
1 beet, shredded
Desired amount of fresh baby spinach leaves
1 carrot, shredded
2 oranges, peeled and chopped

What you do: 

Orange-Soy Dressing:
The recipe for the Orange-Soy Dressing is provided courtesy of The New Now and Zen Epicure with permission from the Book Publishing Company.
It's very important to squeeze the orange juice right before using, or it will lack the necessary aroma and flavour. Mix the juice, soy sauce, and vinegar together, then whisk in the oil slowly until thickened.
Candied Almonds:
Turn oven on 'broiler' setting. Spread almonds out on a baking sheet and drizzle with nectar/syrup and oil. Use desired amount of salt. Bake under broiler until lightly browned. Set aside to cool.
Sweet Potato Croutons:
This is basically how I always eat sweet potatoes, this time only in smaller cubes with a nice crispy texture.
Cube sweet potatoes about 1/2-1 inch in size. Mix spices in a Tupperware-type container. Throw in sweet potato, put on the lid and shake. Empty onto lightly oiled baking sheet, spraying a little extra oil on top of the potatoes.
Bake for about 10 mins on 350 (keep checking to see if potatoes have softened). Once they are almost cooked, turn on the broiler in your oven. Lightly brown the croutons, remove from oven, flip them over, spray lightly with oil and return to oven to lightly brown under the broiler again.
Salad:
Mix all salad ingredients together in large salad bowl with almonds, croutons and salad dressing!

Preparation Time: 
30 minutes
Cooking Time: 
Servings: 
4-6
Recipe Category: 

SO HOW'D IT GO?

This salad is beautiful and delicious.  I love, love, love the dressing!  It is so simple and aromatic and full of flavor. 

I did leave the sweet potatoes out of the salad.  I thought it tasted perfect without them.  However, they were very good by themselves! 

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this is the greatest salad ever!  thanks so much!  only took me 30 mins to get it all together.  :D

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I didn't have any sweet potatoes, so I made just the dressing, and it's really good! I used 1/4c orange juice and less than a tablespoon of safflower oil to make the dressing a little lighter. Ate it with some spinach and cucumbers. I'll try the whole recipe soon.

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Oh my this recipe looks so yummy! I was searching for new spinach salad recipes for dinner tonight. I'm kicking myself becuz we don't have any sweet potato and I want this baaaaad. I think I'm gonna have to go shopping tomorrow morning for sweet potatos!!

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This is my new favorite way to eat sweet potatoes!!! Yumm......excellent recipe!!! I've been munching on it for 3 days, and I think I'll have some more for lunch today.

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ahhhh, *blushing like crazy*

Thanks everyone!!  I'm so glad you're enjoying the recipe... I was afraid it looked too daunting or time-consuming.  It's really not that laborious!

:) :) :)

Oh, and thanks for the feedback, secondbase.  I never really measured exactly how much croutons I make each time, so I sorta ballparked it.  The more croutons the better, I say.  Yum Yum.

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Thank you so much for this recipe. It is absolutely delightful and different. We loved it just as it is and didn't change a thing. Yes, I agree that it's 5 stars.

Inanna

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I'm so glad you decided to post this recipe in the database rather than just on the board-- now I'll be able to fix it when I actually have a kitchen. :D Thanks idioglossia!

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INCREDIBLE RECIPE! the sweet potatoes croutons really make this dish. next time, i will double the amount of them. 5 stars

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