Sunday Brunch: Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Salad

WGN Weekend Morning News

Erin Clarke, the author of the Well Plated Cookbook, joined Sunday Brunch to share her recipe for Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Salad.

RECIPE:

Maple Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Arugula and Farro

YIELD: Serves 4 to 6 as a side or 2 or 3 as a main

For the Salad:

½ cup raw walnut halves
¾ cup uncooked semi- pearled farro
1 medium butternut squash (about 1½ pounds)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1¼ teaspoons kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
5 ounces baby arugula (about 5 cups)
½ cup dried cranberries
⅓ cup crumbled goat cheese (about 1 ⅓ ounces)

For the Maple Dijon Dressing:

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and position a rack in the center of the oven. Spread the walnuts on an ungreased baking sheet. Place in the oven and toast until the walnuts smell fragrant and are crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F.

2. Cook the farro according to the package instructions. Place in a large serving bowl.

3. While the farro cooks, roast the butternut squash: Peel the butternut squash and trim off the top and bottom ends. Cut the neck away from the round base, then stand the base up on its flat end and cut in half from top to bottom. Scoop out the seeds and discard. Cut the squash (both base and neck) into ¾- inch cubes (you should have about 4 cups cubes). Place the cubes in the center of a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil and maple syrup and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Toss to coat the cubes, then spread into an even layer. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until fork tender, turning the squash once halfway through.

4. While the squash bakes, prepare the dressing: In a small bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the dressing ingredients—oil, vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, garlic, salt, and pepper— until combined. (Alternatively, you can shake all of the dressing ingredients together in a mason jar with a tight- fitting lid.) While the farro is still warm, pour enough of the dressing over it to moisten it, then with a large spoon or spatula, stir to combine.

5. Assemble the salad: Transfer the squash and any juices that have collected on the pan to the bowl with the farro. Add the arugula and cranberries. Roughly chop the toasted walnuts, then add them as well. Toss to combine and pour a little more dressing over the top if the salad seems too dry. Sprinkle with the goat cheese. Enjoy warm or at room temperature, with extra dressing as desired.

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