A colorful, tasty salad is a fabulous addition to your holiday table or buffet. One of my favorite fall/winter veggies is butternut squash. I use this versatile vegetable in soup, lasagna, roasted, pureed, and salads.
I love this salad for its taste, vibrant color, and texture. The pecans and pomegranate arils add crunch. I have a few tips to cut down on preparation time when I make this salad. I buy bagged kale that has already been cut and washed. Then I remove the large stems from the cut kale making it easier to eat. Also softening with lemon and oil is a great tip. I use packaged butternut squash instead of peeling and cutting myself.
Did I mention that this salad looks beautiful and is healthy!
FOR THE SALAD:
12 oz. Shredded Kale
1/2 Lemon, Juiced
1 tablespoon. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
12 ounces. Shredded Vegetables, I used Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots
2 Medium Apples, Peeled, Cored, and Diced, I used Granny Smith
1 1/2 c. Candied Pecans (See Note)
4 oz. weight Crumbled Goat Cheese
20 ounces Roasted Butternut Squash (See Note), I purchased a cut-up Butternut Squash package
1/2 cups Pomegranate Arils
FOR THE DRESSING:
1/2 cup Red Wine Vinegar
4 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
4 teaspoon Pure Maple Syrup
1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Put the shredded kale in a large mixing bowl. Add lemon juice and extra-virgin olive oil. Use your hands to massage the lemon juice and olive oil into the greens, about a minute or so. The greens should wilt slightly and take on a deep green color.
Add the other shredded vegetables/greens to the bowl as well as the chopped apple and pecans.
Make the dressing by combining all of the dressing ingredients in a lidded glass jar. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds and then pour it over the salad. Mix well.
Place greens on a long-serving plate. Add the crumbled goat cheese, butternut squash, and pomegranate arils on top. Serve.
• To make the candied pecans, put the pecans in a small skillet with 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup and 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard. Cook on medium-low heat until nuts are toasted and sticky, 5-6 minutes. There shouldn’t be any liquid left in the pan. Add a pinch of salt and remove it from the pan to cool before adding them to the salad.
• To make roasted butternut squash, put the squash on a small baking sheet. Toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch or two of sea salt. Roast at 425ºF until browned and soft, about 20-25 minutes.