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WARM ROASTED WINTER SQUASH SALAD


Serves 6

 

1 kabocha squash

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons butter, divided

1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (fresh will hold up better)

2 tablespoons sugar, divided

½ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon paprika

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

kosher salt

½ cup raw green pumpkin seeds


Sage Vinaigrette

¼ cup sherry vinegar

1 shallot, minced (2 tablespoons)

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 egg yolk

1 cup vegetable oil

2 bunches fresh sage, cut in thin strips (chiffonade) (½ cup)

 

½ cup crumbled blue cheese (cow or goat)

 

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Peel and seed the squash and cut into 1" chunks. You should have 6 to 8 cups. Arrange in one layer on a baking sheet. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Scatter 3 tablespoons of butter broken in bits over the top. Roast until tender and caramelized, 40 to 50 minutes. Reduce heat to prevent over browning if need be. Combine the cranberries with one tablespoon of the sugar and add during the last 10 minutes of cooking.

2. Meanwhile, melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar, cumin, cinnamon, paprika, cayenne and a good pinch of salt. Cook without stirring until it turns a golden caramel color. Add pumpkin seeds and cook, stirring occasionally, until seeds are puffed and golden. Transfer to a plate to cool. When cool enough to handle, break up any clumps with your fingers.

3. Combine the vinegar, shallot, mustard, salt and egg yolk in a bowl and let stand for 20 minutes. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking constantly. When nicely emulsified, stir in the salt, pepper, and sage.

4. To assemble: Place the roasted squash and cranberries on individual plates or a serving platter while still warm. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Scatter blue cheese and spiced pumpkin seeds over the top. Serve immediately.

 

from Suzanne Butler


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