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Roasted Sweet Potato Salad, Salted Caramel Pecans and Crisp Pancetta

Green and gold salad perfect for the Christmas table.

December 13, 2017

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad, Salted Caramel Pecans and Crisp Pancetta

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Sweet Potato and Salted Caramel Pecan Salad

ingredients for six

800gm small orange sweet potato
2Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 x 12cm sprig fresh rosemary
salt flakes and cracked black pepper
150gm flat pancetta
2tsp extra virgin olive oil
150gm salad leaves of your choice
1 x handful fresh rosemary leaves extra
2Tbsp finely chopped chives
salted caramel nuts
100gm pecans
1½Tbsp icing sugar
2 x pinches salt flakes
¼ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup buttermilk
2tsp Dijon mustard


  1. Pre-heat oven to 180°C.
  2. Wash sweet potato leaving skin on. Cut in half lengthways then into 1½cm thick slices. Place in large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil, season with 1½ teasopoons salt flakes and good pinch of cracked black pepper. Strip rosemary leaves from stalk and toss with potatoes to coat in oil. Place potatoes and rosemary on a non-stick paper lined large baking tray in single layer. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until soft and lightly caramelized. Remove from oven.
  3. Meanwhile prepare the rest of the salad components. Remove skin from pancetta portion. Cut meat into ½cm wide slices, then into ½cm thick chunks. Place large frying pan on medium heat. When hot add pancetta with olive oil. Fry for about 5 minutes, tossing pancetta occasionally, until crisp and fat has rendered out. Remove crisp pancetta onto absorbent paper. See notes about storing the rendered fat.
  4. Wash and spin dry salad leaves.
  5. Prepare salted caramel nuts. Place pecans in sieve and run under cold tap to moisted. Place into bowl with icing sugar and salt. Toss to coat. Place sugar coated nuts on a non-stick paper lined smallbaking tray in single layer. Toast in oven for about 10 minutes, until sugar dissolves and starts to caramelize. The nuts will start to smell wonderful when ready. Remove from oven and cool.
  6. Make dressing. Place all components into screw top jar and shake to combine.
  7. When ready to serve, layer all components including chopped chives onto chosen platter. Drizzle dressing in between layers so all salad is ‘well dressed’.
  8. Serve within 30 minutes of putting together for best results.

cooks notes

  • All salt used in our recipes is Murray River Salt Flakes. If using granular salt, cut down amounts accordingly.
  • If buttermilk not available, simply water down mayonnaise by adding 1 to 2 Tbsp warm water to the jar containing mayo and mustard and shaking well.
  • Replace pancetta with 250gm crispy fried bacon or chop up some Christmas ham.
  • Keep pancetta fat in the fridge for up to one month. Use to fry chicken and pork, or crisp up some rustic breadcrumbs by frying in fat to use as a crunch on pasta dishes or mediterranean style salads.

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Meet the team

Tracey Cotterell

Tracey Cotterell
Tracey Cotterell


Tracey has been in the food industry since completing her Diploma in Hotel, Catering and Institutional Management in 1982 in the UK. She worked for an outside catering company in London, then joined her parents in rural West Sussex running

View Tracey’s full profile.

Tracey Cotterell

Tracey Cotterell


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