Hawaiian Sweet Potato and Papaya Salad with Sesame Dressing
This beautiful salad is a tribute to the novel The Secret Life of Mrs. London, and comes from the time we spent in Hawaii. It is a perfect partner for kalua pork or even fresh grilled moonfish. Hawaiian yams come in all sizes and in all shades of orange and lemon yellow as we found out in the farmer’s market near Hilo. Enjoy!
For the Dressing:
1/4 cup sesame oil
1 tbsp. sesame seeds
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 medium size onion, finely chopped
½ cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon kecap manis, sweet thick soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
For the Salad:
4 cups peeled and diced sweet potatoes
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups fresh papaya, peeled and cut in chunks
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup fresh basil, chiffonade
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over low heat until fragrant, then cook the garlic and onion stirring until tender, 6-8 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the rice vinegar and kecap manis. Toss with papaya in a large bowl and set aside.
In a medium size saucepan place the potatoes, water and salt and bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the potatoes are just fork tender. Maybe 10 minutes. Do not overcook. Drain and add to the bowl with the papaya and dressing. Add the scallions and the basil. Set aside to mix flavors for 20 minutes, then serve.