For almost a week now I have been tempting the idea of squash salad, with an abundance of lettuce greens and a bag of locally grown ninja spinach there was no better choice. With a number of amazing recipes popping out at me I struggled narrowing it down to just one. Instead I read through about a half dozen recipe choices picking and pulling all my favourite ingredients.
After all of the possible ingredients were jotted down on a notepad I split and mixed all the possible choices for the best dressing and marinade, everything else was discarded. Now for substance, I wanted to go for a nice sweet rich taste with a little bite, I figured adding a few onions may do the trick. As for rich flavours to help bond with the squash I thought figs, walnuts, sweet peppers, garlic and sage would taste great together.
The salad alone wasn’t enough for me So I decide to go with tomato peach chicken (this recipe is not listed) as the chicken cooked I prepped the salad in decent time. If you are stressed for time you can quickly whip the dressing and marinade together and store in the fridge for later. You can also conveniently double the recipes and have extra for another occasion.The marinade can also work as a flavourful salad dressing in cabbage greens salad.
Butternut Ginger Salad
INGREDIENTS4 cups Butternut Squash, cubed 4 cups Spinach or Mixed Lettuce Greens 8 dried figs, chopped 1/4 cup Walnuts, crushed 1 cup Sweet Red Peppers, chopped 1/3 cup White Onion, minced 4 Cloves Garlic, minced 1 tbsp Fresh Sage, ripped SALAD DRESSING
1/4 cup Walnut Oil 2 tbsp Cider Vinegar 2 tsp Red Wine Vinegar 1 tsp Cayenne Spice 1/2 Lemon Zest BUTTERNUT SQUASH MARINADE 1/3 cup Olive Oil 1/2 Lemon, juice & Pulp 2 tbsp Honey (Vegan, replace with brown sugar) 1 tbsp Ginger, minced 1/4 tsp Salt Directions Preheat Oven to 375˚F Dice butternut squash and place in big bowl, in a separate small bowl start with marinade. Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice with pulp, honey, ginger and salt. Pour half of the marinade over the raw squash, toss squash around and add remaining marinade, continue to mix until all of the squash is marinaded. Spread a single layer of squash evenly across a large deep baking pan with marinade. Bake for 30 min, at 25 min pull squash out and garnish with sage, continue baking for another 5 min. Remove from oven and allow to cool. In a jar mix walnut oil, cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, cayenne spice and lemon zest, shake well and set aside. Tear salad greens into a medium bowl with figs, walnuts, peppers, onions, and garlic. Shake dressing up again and pour over salad, toss salad and serve with butternut squash on top.