On a recent Fall day while settling into a sweater and boots, I had a craving for a dish that showcases the lovely Fall produce that is filling the markets. I played around with different combinations in my mind and came up with this salad. I daydream about food. It’s a quirk of mine that comes in handy sometimes.
I’m really happy with this salad because it has a great interplay of flavors and textures. The gorgeous colors of the butternut squash and pomegranate make this salad festive enough to serve for a holiday party. Best of all, if you roast the squash ahead of time, the dish comes together in minutes.
|Butternut Squash, Pomegranate, and Arugula Salad|| |
- 2 pounds butternut squash cut in ½ inch cubes
- 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
- A few pinches of salt
- 2 bags arugula (7 ounces each)
- ¾ cup pecans, chopped and toasted
- 1 box Trader Joe's pomegranate seeds (or seeds from 1 pomegranate)
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 15 dates, sliced into small chunks (optional)
- Dressing below
- ¾ cup (6 ounces) Trader Joe's Muscrat Citrus Champagne Vinegar
- ⅓ cup grapeseed oil
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
- 2 teaspoons minced shallot
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- Several grinds freshly cracked black pepper
- Roast squash in a 450 degree oven in one layer on a rimmed baking sheet for 18 minutes or until the bottoms of the squash are lightly golden brown and squash is soft. Put squash under broiler for 1-2 minutes until the tops of the squash are flecked with brown. Set aside and let cool. The squash can be roasted ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to use.
- Put all the ingredients into a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well. Refrigerate until used.
- Place arugula in a large flat bowl. Sprinkle the pecans, dates (optional), butternut squash, pomegranate seeds, and cheese on top. Add most of the dressing and toss. Taste and add more dressing if desired. Serve immediately.