Charred Sweet Potatoes with Pickled Shallots, Pistachios, and Ricotta Salata

Charred Sweet Potatoes with Pickled Shallots, Pistachios, and Ricotta Salata
Charred Sweet Potatoes with Pickled Shallots, Pistachios, and Ricotta Salata
Like a lot of chefs, Jared Bennett of Metropole in Cincinnati is into charring vegetables to amplify their natural sweetness inside, and lend them a pleasantly bitter crust. The secret, he says, is precooking many of the vegetables and then just searing them in a smoking-hot cast-iron pan, so they don't go to mush before getting a char. One of his signatures: this sweet potato side dish with pomegranate, lemon juice, pistachio, and ricotta salata.Farideh Sadeghin

Like a lot of chefs, Jared Bennett of Metropole in Cincinnati is into charring vegetables to amplify their natural sweetness inside, and lend them a pleasantly bitter crust. The secret, he says, is precooking many of the vegetables and then just searing them in a smoking-hot cast-iron pan, so they don't go to mush before getting a char. One of his signatures: this sweet potato side dish with pomegranate, lemon juice, pistachio, and ricotta salata.

Charred Sweet Potatoes with Pickled Shallots, Pistachios, and Ricotta Salata
Like a lot of chefs, Jared Bennett of Metropole in Cincinnati is into charring vegetables to amplify their natural sweetness inside, and lend them a pleasantly bitter crust. One of his signatures: sweet potato with pomegranate, lemon juice, pistachio, and ricotta salata.
Yield: serves 4

Ingredients

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 14 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 13 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 12 cup pistachios
  • 1 12 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 3 tbsp. crumbled ricotta salata
  • 1 tbsp. roughly chopped mint
  • 1 tsp. minced chives
  • 1 tsp. roughly chopped parsley
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • Maldon flake sea salt, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350°. Rub potatoes with 3 tbsp. oil, salt, and pepper and wrap individually in aluminum foil; roast until just tender, about 1 hour, and let cool. Toss 1 tbsp. oil, the pistachios, paprika, and salt on a baking sheet; roast until golden, about 5 minutes. Let pistachios cool and roughly chop; set aside. Combine vinegar, shallots, and garlic in a bowl; let sit 20 minutes.
  2. Heat a 12" cast iron skillet over high. Slice sweet potatoes lengthwise ½" thick; brush with oil and sprinkle with salt. Working in batches, cook potatoes, flipping once, until charred and tender, 10–12 minutes; transfer to a serving platter and top with reserved pistachios and shallot mixture, the ricotta salata, mint, chives, parsley, and pepper. Drizzle with more olive oil and the lemon juice; garnish with lemon zest and Maldon.