Before you leave this page because you see “salad” and “New Years Resolution” in the same sentence, I want you to just look at this AMAZING salad:
Now that you have seen it, maybe you’re ready to talk resolutions. Remember how after consuming all that food and alcohol on New Years Eve you vowed to be healthier? Yeah….how’s that going? Maybe you have more will power than I do and you’re still going strong but if you’re like me and have had a relapse (or five) involving scones and cinnamon rolls (I work at a bakery, people!) here is a delicious and New-Years-resolution approved recipe to get you back on track…or keep you going!
Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Spicy-Sweet Pumpkin Seeds and Maple Vinaigrette
(adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe)
To make this salad you will need:
- 1 large butternut squash
- 2 TB olive oil
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- Salad greens (we like spring mix)
- sliced red onion (optional)
- goat cheese, crumbled… Parmesan is fine too if you’re not down with the goat
- 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds (a.k.a. Pepitas, a very fun word to say)
- 3 TB sugar
- 2 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. honey
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- dash cayenne pepper
For the Maple Vinaigrette:
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1/2 balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 TB Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tsp. maple extract or maple flavor
Start by peeling your butternut squash, scooping out the seeds, and chopping it into 1 inch chunks.
Toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake at 450 degrees for 30-35 minutes, turning once after 15 minutes. Be sure to not over crowd your baking sheet- use two sheets if you need to. Squash will be soft and lightly caramelized on the edges when done.
While the squash is baking, place 1 cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas! are you saying it yet?) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, combine sugar, salt, cinnamon, and dash of cayenne pepper. Set aside. When the squash has about 5 minutes left to bake, place your pumpkin seeds in the oven. Roast for about 4-5 minutes, or until you hear them popping and they have browned lightly.
While the pumpkin seeds are still hot, carefully transfer them to a bowl and toss with 2 teaspoons of honey, mixing well. Add the spice mixture and stir until evenly coated. Place the seeds back onto your baking sheet, spreading them out, and let them cool.
While the squash and pumpkin seeds are cooling, make the vinaigrette. Place balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, maple extract, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper into a food processor. Process until combined. With food processor on low, carefully stream in the olive oil until completely emulsified. Set aside.
Now you’re ready to assemble your salad. Place spring mix in a large salad bowl and top with sliced red onion, squash, pumpkin seeds, and goat cheese. Toss with maple vinaigrette and you are good to go!
Whether you’re “resolving” or not, we highly reccomend that you try this salad. It’s incredible! And if you’re not resolving, or if you’ve done a great job and have earned a treat, or if you just don’t care either way, we’ve got plenty of pastries and other yummies at the 2nd Street Baking Co. so come see us and we can talk about how we’ll start eating better next year.
All photographs by Julie Chagnon