Like most of you, I have a single oven in my kitchen and that means that oven time is at a premium on Thanksgiving day. I schedule green bean casserole and stuffing baking times down to the minute to make sure that everything gets warmed and cooked in the most efficient way possible. I've actually been known to create a Thanksgiving oven spreadsheet with all the foods that require heating, the temperatures that the oven needs to be set at for each one and the amount of heating time that each dish requires for optimized oven use. Yup, there's that type A coming out again. 😅
I like to annex my Big Green Egg on Thanksgiving Day too and the reason for that is two fold. First of all - It frees up valuable oven space AND secondly, I love food that's cooked on the Big Green Egg. Seriously - if you have a Big Green Egg and you haven't grilled a turkey - you're missing out. 😜 I digress - grilled turkey is great but so is freeing up oven space on the busiest cooking day of the year.
Maximizing oven space on Thanksgiving is key but figuring out how to achieve this can be a challenge. Prepping as many of the side dishes as possible, has proven to be one of the most helpful Thanksgiving oven savers. I start a week or so in advance and make the cranberry sauce, prebake the potatoes and the pies.
This Crunchy Sweet Potato Salad is amazing and it's the perfect compliment to any Thanksgiving meal. So whether you're making the entire meal this year or enjoying a Thanksgiving meal prepared by someone else, you should consider this as a side to that juicy bird. Wouldn't your mom be impressed if you showed up to Thanksgiving with a heaping bowl of Crunchy Sweet Potato Salad?
Crunchy Sweet Potato Salad
3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4" pieces
3 Tablespoons + 1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
3 scallions, sliced thin
3 Tablespoons lime juice (2 limes)
1 jalapeno chili, seeded and minced
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon pepper
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup whole almonds, toasted and chopped
Add almonds and potatoes and toss to combine.
When it comes to Thanksgiving, I come from a family of mashed potato purists. They refuse to even entertain the idea of swapping out the mashed white potatoes for sweet potatoes. I almost got ejected from the holiday one year for suggesting that we swap the mashed potatoes. 😅 Ever since then - I make sure that there's a giant bowl of mashed potatoes every year and somewhere in the mix of side dishes - I sneak in a few sweet potatoes, just for me. 😉
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