Oven-Roasted Hash Salad (Paleo, AIP)
We all know that we should eating more fresh and cooked greens and herbs. They’re loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, plant phenols, fiber, and probably more yet-to-be-understood nutrients. Eating a diet rich in greens is associated with lower risk for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, dementia, and basically every debilitating disease of aging.
And for those of us who care about our appearance, eating greens is associated with less wrinkling, slower aging of skin, and better glow.
For these reasons and more (they’re incredibly satiating, have low impact on blood sugar, and they’re vibrantly beautiful), I built a hearty serving of greens and fresh herbs into the Healing Green Broth 30-Day Challenge. Everyone feels and looks better when they eat greens every day.
Plus they’re delicious, so WIN!
I also built them into the Challenge because it takes nudges to remind us to eat greens! I aim to eat greens three times per day so I’m always looking for fun ways to incorporate them into favorite dishes.
Lately, I’ve started eating my go-to breakfast and/or lunch hash over salad greens, which in my mind I call Hash Salad. It’s the best of all worlds! Some nutrients in greens are more available raw, some more available cooked – this combines both.
Plus I totally jam on the contrast of warm and cool, soft and crunchy, rich and tangy, all the things that add up to a very satisfying meal.
I’ve posted about hash in the past because I’m a BIG fan of fast, nutritious meals that can accommodate leftovers. Those recipes are all sautéed on top of the stove, but the last couple of months I’ve been almost exclusively roasting hash in the oven. I’ll abandon the idea when it gets hot outside, but when the days are still chilly, roasting hash works like a lazy charm.
I hope you’ll notice something here, something I’m thinking a lot about lately, and that’s making and sharing food that’s simple, tasty, nutritious, and deeply satisfying and satiating.
My goal is to look forward to and enjoy my meal, but not to overeat it. There are very specific elements in foods that trigger us to overeat: a combination of highly processed starch, sugar, salt, fat, and seasoning. Even paleo foods can be made to be addictive or trigger food cravings and in all honesty, I’m not interested in sharing those foods with you, other than the occasional treat for holiday celebrations.
I’ve naturally migrated to delicious-but-not-quite-craveworthy foods like this over the years, because I HATE being a slave to cravings and being tricked into overeating and feeling like crap after I eat, but I’m being even more purposeful and mindful about it lately.
In the end, the goal of eating is to acquire nutrients and energy. The pleasure of eating and bonding with loved ones over meals is awesome, but we’re wired to experience that pleasure in order to get nutrition into our bodies.
It’s good to remember that sometimes, yes?
Oven-Roasted Hash Salad
Note: The trick here is to make all of the elements relatively similarly sized so they cook evenly. You can substitute other vegetables like Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, asparagus, Napa cabbage, green cabbage, carrots, celery, cauliflower, broccoli, pea pods, fennel, etc. in any combination for those below. You can also substitute slab bacon or ground pork or beef for the sausage. If you use leftover roast pork, beef, fish, or chicken, add it during the last 5 minutes of cooking to just heat it through. Feel free to add diced cooked potato or sweet potato or to top with a fried or poached egg!
For the hash:
8 ounces Italian sausage (or bacon or plain ground pork for AIP), sliced or crumbled into 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups Tuscan kale (rib removed, leaves cut into 1/2-inch strips)
1 cup red cabbage, sliced into 1/2-inch strips
6 broccolini spears, halved lengthwise if they’re thick
6 button mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 scallions, sliced thinly
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, oregano, or both (to taste)
3 tablespoons olive oil
freshly ground black pepper (AIP reintroduction)
For the salad:
2 cups arugula or spinach
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, oregano, and/or thyme
2 radishes, sliced
2 tablespoons fermented sauerkraut
1/2 avocado, sliced
8 kalamata or other olives, halved (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Scatter the sausage evenly across a 14-inch cast iron or other large heavy skillet or parchment-lined baking sheet (choose a pan big enough to accommodate the vegetables without crowding).
Arrange the hash vegetables, garlic, and scallions over the sausage. Sprinkle with dried herbs and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, stir a bit and check for doneness, and roast for another 5-10 minutes or until sausage is cooked through and vegetables are tender-crisp.
To serve, divide arugula between two pasta bowls. Squeeze a bit of lemon over the arugula. Divide the hash between the two bowls, on top of the arugula. Garnish with fresh herbs, another squeeze of lemon, radishes, fermented kraut, and avocado. Top with freshly ground black pepper (if using) and serve.