Roasted Butternut Squash Salad

Feb 21, 2014

Roasted butternut squash salad
Roasted butternut squash salad
Credit KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Winter is winding down, but spring vegetables and fruits haven't arrived quite yet. Food writer and chef Sara Dickerman shows KUOW's Marcie Sillman a new way to use the old winter standby: butternut squash.

1 butternut squash (about 2 pounds); peeled, seeded and cut into ½-inch wedges
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil

Cut the butternut squash in 1/2-inch wedges.
Cut the butternut squash in 1/2-inch wedges.
Credit KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Preheat oven to 425 F. Toss the butternut wedges with the oil and salt and spread them out in a single layer on two baking sheets. Roast for 30-40 minutes, turning once, until the squash is browned in spots.

Roasted Squash Salad

Balsamic vinaigrette

1 finely minced shallot
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Mix together the shallot and balsamic vinegar. Let stand for 10-15 minutes, then whisk or shake the olive oil into the balsamic mixture.

For the salad

One batch basic roasted butternut squash (see above)
One batch balsamic vinaigrette (see above)
2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
2 cups arugula leaves
4 Medjool dates, pitted and sliced
Pinch of hot paprika or mild red pepper flakes (like Aleppo or Marash)
2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped
¼ cup manouri cheese or other fresh cheese like feta, queso fresco or chèvre
Salt and pepper to taste

Chef and food writer Sara Dickerman shows KUOW's Marcie Sillman how to make roasted squash salad.
Chef and food writer Sara Dickerman shows KUOW's Marcie Sillman how to make roasted squash salad.
Credit KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Heat a dry skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle in the pumpkin seeds and toast for about 1 minute. Shake the pan occasionally, until the seeds turn lightly browned and start to pop. Pour onto a plate and let the seeds cool.

Toss the arugula with one or two spoonfuls of the vinaigrette, season to taste with a bit of salt. Place on a serving platter. Gently toss the butternut squash, dates, paprika or pepper flakes and mint with the remaining vinaigrette.

Taste and season with with salt and pepper; keeping in mind that the cheese will add additional saltiness. Place the squash mixture atop the arugula. Sprinkle the salad with cheese and the toasted pumpkin seeds.