Butternut Squash Salad 5

Next week, I will get to celebrate my first “North American Thanksgiving” celebration across the ocean from North America in France. I have been tasked with bringing a salad and a sweet potato dish, so I began looking over the repertoire of recipes that have already been shared on this blog. I came across this sweet potato dish, which first introduced me to the delectable chimichurri sauce, a garlic-and-herb-rich sauce that perfectly complements root vegetables and meats alike.

Then I came across a recipe I developed for the blog last fall.  I developed it just a little too late, by the time most of us were ready ditch our pumpkin-spice cravings in favor of gingerbread and eggnog. Thankfully, those pumpkin-spice cravings have found us once again.  This butternut squash salad recipe combines all my favorite elements of fall: spiced squash, apple cider, dried cranberries and roasted pumpkin seeds, tossed with folate- and iron-rich spinach.

Perhaps I’ll bring this along along next week for our North American Thanksgiving celebration, or maybe I’ll stick with a more traditional French salad. In France, most salads are a simple first course of lettuce tossed with a tasty homemade vinaigrette. The bowl of salad is passed around until it has been devoured and then the next course is served. But in the spirit of celebrating things to be thankful for in America, I just might share a flavor-packed tossed salad like this one.

Butternut Squash Salad 4

Butternut Squash Spinach Salad
Author: 
Serves: Makes 4-6 servings
 
Ingredients
  • FOR SALAD:
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled, cubed and seeds reserved
  • ½ a red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 7-ounce package baby spinach
  • Dried cranberries
  • FOR BUTTERNUT SQUASH MARINADE:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg
  • pinch of sea salt
  • dash of freshly cracked black pepper
  • FOR DRESSING:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ¼ cup apple cider
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Dash of nutmeg
  • FOR TOASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SEEDS:
  • Seeds of 1 butternut squash
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Peel butternut squash, reserving seeds. Cut into ½-inch cubes.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine butternut squash and marinade ingredients (olive oil, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper). Toss to coat. Transfer to a skillet and saute on medium heat 5-7 minutes until soft on the outside.
  3. Meanwhile, wash butternut squash seeds. Pat dry. Transfer to a skillet with olive oil and salt and saute on medium heat 2-4 minutes until toasted.
  4. Combine dressing ingredients (olive oil, lemon juice, apple cider, garlic powder, cinnamon and nutmeg) and pour over spinach. Toss to coat.
  5. Top spinach with butternut squash, sliced red onions, dried cranberries and toasted butternut squash ingredients. If desired, make butternut squash and seeds ahead of time to allow to cool.

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Article written by Rachel VanDuzer and coordinated by VanDuzer Design & Marketing for Wolff’s Apple House and may also be syndicated on Fig: West Chester and Rachel’s Farm Table.