Friday, December 27, 2013

squash, pomegranate and hazelnut salad.

you can make this incredibly versatile dish with any squash or vegetables you have on hand. the sweetness of the pomegranate, the crunch of hazelnuts, and the bite of the dressing pretty much make the salad. 

salad with butternut squash, pomegranate and hazelnuts
adapted from food52

for the salad:
5 cups greens (i went with a mix of kale and spinach, but arugula and chard would work well too)
2 cups butternut squash, cubed
1 leek, just the white and light green parts, sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 cups pomegranate seeds
1/2 cup hazelnuts
1/2 cup cilantro

for the dressing:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon maple syrup
salt and pepper to taste

preheat the oven to 375 degrees. toss the squash and leeks in 1 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper on a baking sheet. the leeks and squash require different amounts of time to roast, so try to keep them separate on the sheet. roast the leeks for about 20 minutes and the squash for 30-35 minutes. check on the vegetables regularly and toss as needed to avoid burning.

while the veggies are roasting, place the hazelnuts in a shallow baking dish and toast them in the oven for 4-6 minutes (or until golden). alternatively, you can toast them dry in a pan on the stove top for about 3-4 minutes over medium heat. let the nuts cool, chop them roughly, and set aside.

make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil, mustard, lemon, maple syrup, salt and pepper. in a large serving bowl, pour the dressing over the greens and them well with your hands until they are coated in the dressing and take on an almost wilted texture. add the pomegranate seeds, hazelnuts, and cilantro.

once the squash and leeks have finished roasting and have cooled for 10-15 minutes, add them to the salad. give the entire dish a big toss, add some salt and pepper to taste, and serve.