Butternut squash is one of those versatile squashes you can use in various ways. I made this salad that combines roasted squash, crunchy nuts, grapes in a light vinaigrette dressing on top of peppery arugula and mild spinach. I chose not to use a grain, like quinoa. Salads are one of those recipes you can add more or less or change one or more ingredients to your liking. There is a little sweet and just a little savory in this salad. I hope you like this version.
*Note: the quantities of the ingredients are not exact. A lot depends on how big of a salad you want to make. I find that to be one of the good things about making some salads.
Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette
½ cup roasted Hazelnuts, rough chop
½ cup Zucchini, chopped in bite size pieces
¼ cup Feta Cheese crumbles
½ cup Purple Grapes, cut in half
½ large Butternut Squash, cooked, cut up in bite size pieces. You’ll use just half of the
butternut squash. Save the other half for another salad, soup or sauce over pasta
½ tsp Sage
Dressing: adjust ingredients if making a smaller salad
1/3 cup Apple Cider
(If using Apple Juice increase Cider Vinegar 3 Tbsp)
1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
1 tsp Maple Syrup
¼ cup Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
1 small Shallot, minced
½ tsp Sage
Taste and Adjust to your preference
Note: don’t feel like you have to use All of the dressing on the salad. I like less than more so you taste a lot more of the ingredients in the salad and not be overpowered by the dressing)
Preheat the oven to 425. Use a peeler to peel the skin off. Cut in half your butternut squash, scoop out the pulp and seeds. Slice the butternut squash in bite size pieces. Salt and pepper. In a baking pan, lined with parchment paper, roast the butternut squash for about 15 minutes until soft but be careful not to overcook it and the squash is more mushy than not.
While the butternut squash is roasting, prep the remaining ingredients. Chop up the zucchini and shallot. In a sauté pan lightly toast the hazelnuts. Cut the grapes in half and chop the hazelnuts.
Make your dressing: In a small bowl add the apple cider, cider vinegar and olive oil. I Wish them well. Add in the Dijon mustard, salt and pepper, shallot, maple syrup and sage. Whisk all of the ingredients until fully mixed together.
Once the butternut squash has cooled down, we can make the salad. In a bowl add the arugula and spinach (tear in half any big pieces of spinach). Add the butternut squash then the grapes, zucchini and feta cheese. For the dressing I often put the dressing in a small bowl so individuals can put on their own dressing. In case there is any salad left over the salad won’t wilt with the dressing on it in the fridge. Then sprinkle on the hazelnuts. Gently fluff the salad and plate.
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