Roasted Purple Sweet Potatoes with a Trio of dipping sauces

Zesty Turmeric & Lemon Tahini Sauce, Smokey Chipotle Roasted Red Pepper Sauce, and Basil & Pumpkin Seed Pesto.

Each one of these sauces are deeeee-licious with a capital D, full of health promoting ingredients and super multifunctional. Once I go to the bother of making a batch of anything, I like to know that I’m really getting my moneys worth out of it, so to speak! They can be stored in the fridge in an airtight glass jar for a few weeks to be used on anything and everything that tickles your fancy. I use them as salad dressings, as a zesty topping for steamed or roasted veggies, in sandwiches, wraps and burgers, and as crudité dipping sauces to name a few.

Turmeric really is the super spice of the moment, and rightly so in my eyes! Curcumin is the yellow pigment and main active ingredient in turmeric and has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant. Amazingly, it has demonstrated incredible anti-cancer benefits. And when combined with a fat (eg. an oil) and black pepper, curcumin’s anti-cancer effects are further amplified as it becomes more readily available to the body.

NOTE — this post is really all about the sauces taking centre stage, but the sweet potatoes were simply tossed in a little olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme; and roasted in a pre-heated oven for 30 minutes until starting to get crispy.


For the Turmeric Sauce

· 6 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
· Juice and zest from 1 Lemon
· 2 tsp Brown Rice Syrup (or a sweetener of your choice like Maple Syrup or Honey)
· 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
· 50g Fresh Turmeric Root
· 30g Light Tahini
· Fresh black pepper to help the absorption of Turmeric

For the Chiptole Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

· 4 Roasted Red Peppers (if you have time to roast yourself, then great! But I normally use the pre-prepared ones stored in oil in a glass jar in most major supermarkets)
· 2 tbsp Vegenaise/Mayonaise or Natural Yogurt
· 1 tsp Smoked Paprika
· Zest & Juice from 2 Limes
· ½ tsp Chipotle Chilli Flakes
· Salt & Pepper to taste

For the Pesto

· 1–2 Garlic Cloves (I like to use smoked garlic when I can find it)
· 70g Fresh Basil leaves and stalks
· 50g Pumpkin Seeds
· 40g Parmesan cheese
· 150ml Toasted Pumpkin Seed Oil (or any good quality Olive Oil)
· 1½ tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
· Zest of 1 Lemon and juice from ½ lemon
· Himalayan Salt
· Fresh Black Pepper
· Optional — Chilli Flakes to taste


For the Turmeric Tahini sauce

· Peel the turmeric with a teaspoon (yes! It really does work!) and drop onto a running blade in a high speed blender.
· Stop the blender and scrape down the sides with a spatula so that the turmeric is at the bottom.
· Add all of the remaining ingredients and blitz.

For the Chiptole Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

· Add all of the ingredients to a high speed blender and blitz until desired consistency

For the Pesto

· In a blender, whizz the garlic and pumpkin seeds together to a paste — you may need to add a little of the oil to help the blades to puree the mixture.
· You want to have a little texture in pesto so avoid blending it so much that it becomes a smooth puree.
· Add half of the oil, lemon zest, lemon juice and the apple cider vinegar, and only then add the basil leaves — this way, the pesto keeps it’s lovely green colour and doesn’t go brown like it does if you add the leaves at the beginning.
· Finely grate the cheese and add it to the blender, then gradually pour in the remaining oil. It might need thinning with some water or more oil if desired.
· Season well with salt, pepper and chilli flakes if using.
· Mix well.