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Saturday, November 29, 2008

winter salad: roasted acorn squash, apples & blue cheese

winter salad
After all the Thanksgiving dinners, I can only think about salads (and running 6 miles a day every day this week to make up for the pumpkin brownies my Gramma made). This is adapted from December 2008 Bon Appetit, which originally called for butternut squash but I substituted acorn. (Also note, this is half the original recipe -the original serves 10.)

Grocery list: (dressing) 1 T balsamic, 1 T lemon juice, 3 T good quality olive oil; (salad) 2 T balsamic, 1 tsp brown sugar, 1 2-pound butternut or acorn squash, 2 heads belgian endive, 1 fuji apple, 4 oz crumbled blue cheese, 1/4 c dried cranberries.

balsamic glaze for squash

Start by roasting the squash. Cut the squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds. Peel and slice crosswise into 1/4 inch pieces. Arrange on a lined baking sheet and brush each piece with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 5 minutes at 400 degrees. Whisk the balsamic and brown sugar together, then brush each piece of squash; return to the oven and roast for an additional 5 minutes.

roasting acorn squash

Flip squash pieces and brush with remaining vinegar-sugar combination. Continue to roast until squash is fork-tender, about another 15 minutes. Allow to cool.

Trim the root ends of endive and arrange leaves on plates - about 5-6 leaves per plate, for 4 plates. Core the apple and cut into thin strips, and evenly distribute across plates. Place squash strips in center of each plate, and top with cheese and cranberries.

For the dressing, whisk the balsamic, lemon juice and olive oil with salt and pepper. Drizzle dressing over each salad and serve. This would also be nice with a few pieces of toasted walnuts too...

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