Roasted Yam & Apple Salad

IMG_2284When we were first married, the farm was 50 acres of open grazing land mixed with woodlands. The driveway was built and we had a 40’ trailer to live in.  Our property was the larger half of old farmlands that had been divided in two.  We shared in a small herd of cattle ranging over both properties.

It was a very inspiring thing to look at what was essentially a blank canvas.  We drew plans of what we might have on the farm.  Where the orchard would go, a stable, cross fencing and so on, even where we’d build the house.  At that time we didn’t know that farms tend to have plans of their own.

Our first building was for storage, with three stalls for the horses (even though we only had one), an area for hay and a large room that could be heated.  This room became the pump house, the electrical shed, the milking parlour, freezer area and storage.  The first winter that we had this new space, we bought big burlap sacks of potatoes, carrots and onions.  We had beef in the freezer, eggs from our hens, and I thought how fortunate we were to have so much! Later our small orchard would start to give us fruit, and we could add that to our winter larder.  Those early winters gave me a real appreciation for eating seasonal foods.

Now we live in our farmhouse, with lots of cross fencing and not too many other buildings.  I have plenty of food storage, as we’ve needed to incorporate that into our home.  I try not to go across to town too often, and prefer to use foods that last well.  We have a large outdoor larder on the north side of the house, which except for in extreme temperatures in the winter & summer, can keep fruits and vegetables very well.  

Click here for printable version.

Makes 4 main course salads, or 8 side salads.


1 large yam 1½ – 2#

1 T olive oil

1 T sesame oil

1 T cumin seedsIMG_2270

½ t salt

4 Gala apples (should be about ⅔ the weight of the yam)IMG_2272

⅔ c dried cranberriesIMG_2274

½ c toasted sliced or slivered almonds


IMG_2279Greens to line the plates – arugula, baby romaine, or mesclun about 1 oz per plate or 2 cups loosely packed.


Preheat the oven to 375°

Line a baking sheet with parchment

Cut the yam into 1” slices, peel and cut into uniform piecesIMG_2268


Put the yam pieces into a bowl, and drizzle with the two oils and sprinkle with the cumin seeds and salt.

Toss all together well. Put in a single layer on the parchment lined sheet, scraping any extra oil and seeds out of the bowl.IMG_2271

Bake for 45 minutes, turning the pieces twice during roasting.

Make the dressing before continuing (follows).

Peel, core and cut up the apples into similar size pieces as you did the yam.IMG_2281

Put in a bowl and mix in the cranberries.

Top the fruit with half of the dressing.  Toss gently, to coat.IMG_2282

When the yam is finished roasting, let it sit for ½ hr to cool down. IMG_2283

Add the cooled yam pieces to the apple & cranberry mixture.  Gently mix, adding more dressing if desired.IMG_2286

Put any remaining dressing in a small bowl or pitcher.

Lay your greens on the plates, top with the yam mixture.

Scatter almonds on top.

Serve with extra dressing on the side.

Biryani Vinaigrette


5 T apple cider vinegar

2 T liquid honey – heat for 10 seconds or so in the microwave to liquefy if needed

½ T Dijon mustard – grainy or smooth, both work well

1 T Biryani paste (I use Patak’s)IMG_2276

¾ c canola oil


Process all until emulsified.IMG_2280

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