Butternut squash might just be THE quintessential, autumn New England farm staple – but it’s no longer relegated to just a vegetable accompaniment to a hot meal. In this recipe, our master in-house chef Will McDonough has re-imagined this perennial favorite as the star of a startling and flavorful salad that could either stand on its own as meal, a starter course, or make a perfect pairing with a wide of entrees. Let us know what you think.
- 1 small butternut squash (peeled, cubed and roasted with salt, pepper and extra virgin olive oil for seasoning)
- 4 cups of fresh baby spinach or arugula
- 2 cups of fresh chopped kale (or baby kale)
- ½ cup dried cranberries (you can also substitute dried cherries or pomegranate arils)
- ¼ cup crushed walnuts
- ¼ cup feta cheese crumbles
- salt and black pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Thoroughly wash the baby spinach and add it to a large salad bowl.
- Wash the butternut squash, peel the skin, slice it in half length-wise and core the inside.
- Continue to chop the squash until you’re left with nothing but tiny cubes.
- Lightly spray a baking tray with nonstick cooking spray; then lay the cubes across the surface of the tray.
- Sprinkle the cubes with salt and pepper and drizzle them with extra virgin olive oil.
- Place the seasoned squash cubes into the preheated oven and bake for 30-40 minutes, stirring often to prevent any charring. When ready, the squash cubes will be golden-brown in color and tender but not mushy. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
- Add the feta cheese, dried cranberries, walnuts and a dash of some salt and pepper to the large salad bowl containing the baby spinach.
- When the squash cubes have cooled down, add them to the salad and give all of the ingredients a nice toss.
- Set the bowl to the side until you’re ready to dress it prior to serving.
- Toss with Citrus Vinaigrette.