Where did the summer go? It raced by! We had lots of fun times, and made great memories, but I sure wasn’t ready for it to fade away.
But, the calendar page turned and September is here. Back to school treats and fall cooking (think chili, apple pie, and pumpkin bread) awaits and those great flavors that help ease the pain of saying “see ya later” to warm, summer days.
I was thrilled that the Hen House Market CSA included a butternut squash last week. Apples from this week’s CSA were the ideal addition to this salad, too. You bet this salad is absolutely perfect this time of year and it is one of my favorites.
The end of the summer also means the end of the CSA. What fun it has been to eat local and explore such fresh produce, local meats, bread and other goodies. Thank you Hen House Market for sharing local food with us! It was great!
Now—on to the salad. It makes plenty—so it is perfect for that last cookout when friends come over. I often keep some salad undressed and put some of the dressing separate in a separate container. The salad stays fresh and I can enjoy it for lunch the next day. It is chocked full of goodness and healthy ingredients so it is the perfect lunch.
Try it—I bet you will soon be a fan of Butternut squash too.
One more thing. Do you ever shy away from Butternut because it looks hard to cut? Follow the tip at the end of the recipe and after a minute or two in the microwave oven, it will be so much easier to cut.
Roasted Butternut Squash Salad
1 butternut squash, (about 1-1/2-pounds) peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 to 3/4 inch
cubes (about 4 cups)
6 tablespoons olive, divided
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon crushed dried rosemary
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
5 to 6 cups torn mixed greens or romaine
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
2 apples or pears, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1/3 cup dried sweetened cranberries
1/3 cup candied pecans or walnut halves
Preheat the oven to 400⁰ F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Place the squash cubes in a zip-top bag. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil, honey, rosemary, salt and pepper. Seal and shake bag to coat evenly. Pour squash onto prepared baking sheet. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until squash is tender when pricked with a fork, stirring once midway through cooking. Set aside.
In a small, 8-ounce jar with tight fitting lid, combine remaining ¼ cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, shallots, Dijon, salt and pepper. Seal and shake until combined and emulsified.
Place the greens in a large salad bowl and add the roasted squash mixture. Add the red onion, sliced apples or pears, and cranberries and toss to combine. Drizzle with dressing and toss. Garnish with candied pecans.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
To make peeling the butternut squash easier, prick the squash with the tip of a sharp knife in several places. Microwave on High (100% power) for 1 to 2 minutes, then allow to stand for 3 minutes. Use a sharp, heavy knife and first slice off the stem. Peel with a vegetable peeler. Cut in half and scoop out seeds. Cut into cubes.
If desired, substitute flavored olive oil or balsamic vinegar in this recipe. For example, use rosemary flavored olive oil for the olive oil and substitute cranberry pear balsamic vinegar for the balsamic vinegar. This salad is also great with crisp, crumbled bacon in it.
Candied pecans? Pick up a bag at the grocery stores, but they are also easy to make. Here is my favorite recipe.
This post has been sponsored by Hen House. More information on their CSA can be found here. All opinions expressed in this post are our own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make this site possible.