It’s been raining for a thousand years. Well not quite but nearly 2 months straight. I recall the day everything started when the sky opened up and day after day of rain replaced what was supposed to be a bright, sunny season. As I drown my sorrows in liquid vitamin D (which I usually reserve for the dark winter months), I realize maybe this is the new normal and I have to find a way to accept it.
It’s absurd to be frustrated at weather and yet here I am, feeling robbed of strawberry picking, beach day trips, laying in the grass, playing with my kids outside and more. I waited all summer for myself to return to some version of myself but it hasn’t quite happened. Accepting things as they are feels impossibly difficult for me. I wonder if I’m alone or if it’s simply human nature to be resistant to things that go against our expectations. But truly what is there to do other than make peace with what is? When talking about expectations someone dear once said: “if you don’t have any, you won’t be disappointed.” What a concept!
But here we are on the brink of fall and I’m going to optimistically believe that eventually the rain will stop and sunnier days will be on the horizon. They have to be, right? So I’m thinking about fall food, fall flavors and all things I love about this season. Earthy, rich, luscious and satisfying food that fits perfectly well with the start of cooler weather.
There are many foods I associate with fall but one in particular is sage. In my opinion it’s an ingredient that can easily make or break a dish. Sage is a capricious herb; use too much and you find yourself with an overpowering flavor that drowns out all other ingredients. Use too little and you miss out on the beauty and essence of what this robust herb has to offer.
It was sage that inspired the sauce for this dish - a creamy and satisfying concoction. Coconut milk, walnuts, sage and maple syrup work thoroughly well with shallot, kale and garlic to create this delightful sauce. Next came the thing to pair it with. I settled on sweet potato noodles as the ideal companion. It’s an indulgent, fall inspired dish you can throw together in 15 minutes.
sweet potato noodles with kale and walnut sauce:
prep time: 10 minutes
cooking time: 15 minutes
makes: 4 servings
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, finely cut
1 large garlic cloves minced
1/3 cup walnuts plus extra 2 tbsp
1 can coconut milk
1 tsp fresh sage
1 tsp maple syrup (skip for Whole 30)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups kale de-stemmed and cut into bite size pieces
2 large sweet potatoes spiralized
spiralizer of your choice
medium frying pan
large frying pan
blender or food processor
Blend coconut milk, sage, maple syrup and 1/3 cup walnuts. Set aside.
Preheat large frying pan on medium. Add 1 tbsp olive oil and shallot and cook for 2-3 minutes until soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Next, add kale and cook for 5 minutes until it begins to soften but still retains a crunch.
Add walnut sage sauce and cook for 1 minute to heat sauce through.
Meanwhile, in medium frying pan, add 1 tbsp olive oil and sweet potato noodles and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring regularly. Add 2 tbsp water to create steam and continue cooking for another 5 minutes until sweet potato noodles are soft. You can cook them longer if you want them a bit softer. Add sweet potato noodles to sauce and combine well.
Serve right away with additional chopped walnuts and if you really love sage, a little extra on top.