Warm Sweet Potato and Chick Pea Salad

Holy shit.  Jonny and I are so deeply touched by the loving response to our appearance on The Jeff Probst Show.  To all of you who took the time to watch our show and leave us such sweet comments and emails, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your kindness.  Even you, Mr. Cosmetic Dentist from Texas who offered me free treatment AKA totally missed the point, I know you meant well and your offer was very generous.  You all are the anti-snark, and we love you.

My intention in going on the show and writing my blog post about it was not to eradicate snark.  That’s a task of Oprah-level proportions.  Instead, I wanted to share how you can be confident and love yourself even when some asshole else calls you out on your hot button issue and you’re having “that moment when the air gets sucked out of the room and you are right back in seventh grade” (quote from an amazing commenter on BlogHer).  I hope I succeeded!  But even if I didn’t, I am completely grateful for and humbled by the fact that our clip got posted on Yahoo! Shine and went berserk with hundreds of positive, supportive comments – up until yesterday I would have thought defied the laws of the internet.

One last thing and then let’s never use the word ‘snark’ again, yeah?  To the person who found my blog using the search term “save the date tooth lady”, thank you so much for gracing our little story with your elite Google-searching comedic genius.  I haven’t laughed that hard in a really long time.

OKAY.  Now let’s talk food, shall we?

I’m having a love affair with sweet potatoes lately.  They’re high in fiber and a bunch of different vitamins, they taste delicious, they lend themselves beautifully to corny plays on words like “I yam what I yam!”

For today’s recipe, I adapted a salad that calls for butternut squash.  Sometimes you just don’t feel like peeling a big enormo squash, am I right?  Sweet potatoes are way more approachable, you can peel them one at a time and feel like you’re getting somewhere, unlike facing a behemoth squash mountain that makes you want to just give up and order pizza.

This warm sweet potato salad is comforting and satisfying. full of healthy fats and slow-burning complex carbs.  It’s wonderful to eat for lunch when you know you’ll be heading to a holiday party in the evening because it keeps you nice and full for a good long time; you won’t be starving and ready to whiz through the cheese ball, Tazmanian devil-style, by 6pm.

Warm Sweet Potato and Chick Pea Salad

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen


2ish pounds of sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
2 T olive oil
1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 red onion, diced
salt and pepper to taste

1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 T tahini
3 T water
2 T olive oil

Yield:  3 as an entree, 6 as a side

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes


  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  • Combine the sweet potatoes, garlic, paprika, olive oil, and a bit of salt and pepper and toss until evenly coated. Roast them on a baking sheet for 25 or so minutes, or until soft. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.
  • To make the dressing, whisk together the garlic and lemon juice. Add the tahini next, and whisk some more.  Finally,  add the water and olive oil, whisk well, and add salt and pepper to taste.  Add a touch more water or olive oil if it still feels too thick.
  • You’re nearly done!  Combine the roasted sweet potatoes, red onion, and chick peas in a large bowl.  Toss gently in the tahini dressing  – you might want to toss in some and serve the rest on the side, though I personally like to toss the whole damn thing right in there.  Serve immediately.


The green things in the picture are sage we used as garnish.  It wasn’t bad, but sage with this salad didn’t knock my socks off.  I do, however, love using as sage as often as possible, because Jonny always says that the soft leaves look like they would make a nice blanket for a mouse.


6 Responses to Warm Sweet Potato and Chick Pea Salad
  1. Jo Crawford
    December 5, 2012 | 2:53 pm

    Marla, thanks so much for posting the update with the clip from Jeff Probst’s show. I really loved seeing you and Jonny talk about it and feel how your energy shifted since you first shared this experience with us. And Jonny’s gentle protectiveness (esp. when he puts an arm around you when you get vulnerable) made me go awww. You guys are awe-some :)

    • Marla
      December 6, 2012 | 9:18 am

      JO thank YOU so so much for your caring. And I know, right?!?! He is the best! That part made me get so choked up. I am so lucky to have such an incredible husband.

  2. Dona
    December 5, 2012 | 1:24 pm

    Love the chirp napkin ring!!

    • Marla
      December 6, 2012 | 9:16 am

      Courtesy of lovely you! Thank you SO SO SO much, we adore them! It was so fantastic to finally meet you and I really hope to see you again soon. xoxo

  3. Joanna
    December 5, 2012 | 11:28 am

    That’s Dr. Cosmetic Dentist from Texas to you, missy

    • Marla
      December 6, 2012 | 9:16 am

      Dr. Nice Chompers Y’ALL

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I'm Marla Hamilton, and this is my blog. I write it because I want to make it very easy for you to feel healthy and great about yourself.Read more about me here.
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