Winter Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash

Salads are not always my go-to once cold weather sets in but I’ve found that if I change up my summer salad veggies for more seasonal ingredients, I enjoy them so much more. This salad recipe was sent to me by my cousin Deborah, and I loved her easy to assemble wintery ingredients. She used spinach, pepitas, butternut squash, feta cheese, and pomegranates in her delicious salad blend but feel free to mix and match a variety of options based on taste and availability. Kale or endive for spinach, roasted sweet potatoes for the butternut squash, Parmesan or blue cheese for feta, walnuts or pistachios for pepitas, and dried cranberries in place of the pomegranate seeds. Your goal is to create a colorful and flavorful blend of salty, savory, and slightly sweet items. For the dressing, a simple splash of olive oil and vinegar is all you need or you can get more creative by adding pomegranate juice, orange or lemon juice, chopped shallots, and mustard.

Winter Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash

Ingredients

1/2 butternut squash, peeled, cut into 1/2″ cubes, about 2 cups

6 cups dark leafy greens like spinach, kale, endive, or arugula

1/2 fennel bulb, sliced in half, sliced thin

1 small shallot, sliced thin

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated or shaved

1/2 cup pistachios

1/4 cup dried cranberries

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons pomegranate juice

5 tablespoons, olive oil, divided

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper

Directions

  1. Turn oven to 400 degrees. Place cubed butternut squash on a parchment lined baking sheet. Toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Roast in oven for 25-30 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.
  2. In a large bowl, combine spinach, fennel, shallots, feta cheese, pistachios, and cranberries. Add cooled butternut squash and toss gently.
  3. In a small jar with lid, combine vinegar, pomegranate juice, remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper. Shake well. Drizzle over salad and serve.

Recipe adapted from a recipe provided by Deborah Simpson.

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