Fall Harvest Salad

Thank you for all of the wonderful support from the Boston Herald article! It was such a fun experience- I really hope to collaborate on projects like that again soon! Most of you who saw the article saw my Pumpkin Donuts recipe, but I also created a second recipe to help highlight my favorite ingredients of the season. Squashes are starting to pop up in markets, and you’ll see me start to feature them more and more as the colder weather progresses. If you don’t know how to cook with squash, or only stick to one variety and want to branch out, make sure you check out October’s issue of Cooking Light Magazine. They have a great article about different varieties of squash, how to choose them at the market, and some of the best ways to cook them. Today’s recipe highlights a classic- butternut squash.


I love butternut squash because it can take on so many textures depending on how you cook it. If you saute and steam it, like in this delicious Squash Gratin with Wild Mushrooms and Bacon, it mashes into a creamy, potato-like consistency. If you roast it, like I have in this recipe, the squash crisps on the outside and has a creamy center. Roasting squash allows for it to be a mix-in ingredient, a topping for salads, and a starchy addition to vegetables. I seasoned the squash with paparika and maple syrup before roasting it to create a great sweet and spicy flavor. Peppery arugula, sweet cranberries, and creamy camembert cheese give a whole new dimension of flavors to this salad, making it a great choice for healthy cooking this fall.

Fall Harvest Salad
Makes: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes   Total Time: 15 minutes

2 cups butternut squash, cut into medium dice
1 tbs olive oil
2 tsp paprika
2 tbs maple syrup
¾ cup dried cranberries
1½ cups boiling water
1 cup candied pecans
4 oz camembert cheese, cut into large segments
6 cups lightly packed arugula

For The Dressing:
2 tbs maple syrup
3 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 tbs Dijon mustard
½ tsp cayenne pepper
4 tbs extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Lay the chopped butternut squash in a single layer on a sprayed cookie sheet. Drizzle and season the squash with the olive oil, paprika, maple syrup, salt and pepper. Toss well to evenly coat and lay back in a single layer. Bake the squash for 30 minutes, or until it is caramelized and tender.
3. While the squash is baking, prepare the dressing by whisking all of the ingredients together in a small bowl. Add the olive oil last, whisking it in a steady stream to create an emulsion. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Next, rehydrate the cranberries by the boiling water over the cranberries in a medium bowl. Let the cranberries sit until they have plumped up- roughly 5 minutes or so- before draining the excess water away.
5. Remove the butternut squash from the oven and let it cool enough so that you can work with it.
6. Prepare the salad by lightly tossing the arugula, butternut squash, cranberries, and pecans in a large bowl. Drizzle with the dressing and continue to toss so that everything is coated and evenly distributed. Finish with the cheese just before serving.


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