There comes a time when we all must face our fears, problems and addictions. Now, I come clean in admitting that I have an addiction to potatoes. Yes, it is true. No matter the type, I am hooked on potatoes and one of my favorite ways of enjoying potatoes is in a potato salad. This version of potato salad screams southern comfort - which would actually be a great addition to the salad too! Ha ha.
Sweet potatoes are prominently known in southern cuisine via sweet potato pie and candied potatoes. It’s just another one of those things falling in line along with Brunswick Stew (I made it yet to post about it), cornbread, chicken fried steak, red eye gravy and so forth. The sole ingredient to allow the dressing to have Cajun in it is that I used Crystal hot sauce. Two essential ingredients in Naw’lins jotted down in recipes by their brand name areCrystal’s Hot SauceandRo*tel. So of course you should use Crystal’s Hot sauce in this recipe but if it isn’t available or if you have another brand on hand, it will do.
If you’re feasting upon this delightful salad for a lunch platter, double the dressing and serve over a bed of greens. The potato salad can be served at room temperature but to allow the potatoes to sponge up some of the dressing, it’s best to refrigerate overnight. Pour half of the dressing on top and the extra after plating. This is a fabulous picnic salad considering its nonperishable ingredients so make plenty, pack a hefty bowl and tote along to your summer block party. Y’all give ‘em a good taste of darn good southern food. They don’t know what they’re missing.
Roasted Sweet Potato Saladwith Candied Cajun Dressing 1 medium sweet potato, diced into 1 inch cubes ½ small onion, sliced thin 2 tbsp cranberries, slightly sweetened A few strips of bacon (2-3), cooked and crumbled
Dressing: ¼ cup orange juice 1 tbsp maple syrup ½ tbsp Dijon mustard 1 tsp cinnamon A few dashes of hot sauce
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Line a sheet pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Spread out your potato evenly and spray the top lightly with more nonstick cooking spray. Bake in the oven for five minutes, remove, toss, and repeat until each side is evenly golden. My total length of time for this to occur was fifteen minutes.
In a medium skillet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, lay out in one layer your onion slivers. Turn on the heat high and wait until you begin to hear the onions sizzling and popping. Once this occurs, stir and turn down the heat to medium. Continue this process of cooking on medium heat and stirring until the onions begin to turn golden brown. At some point if the onions begin to stick, add a little bit of water to spark the process - so to speak. This also takes about fifteen minutes for perfectly even caramelization.
Once the potatoes and onions are cooked, toss them into a bowl with the cranberries and bacon. Mix the dressing ingredients together, pour on top of the ingredients and stir to combine. Refrigerate over night.