Recipe by Chef Amanda DeLaura
The first of November screams some of my favorite things—freshly picked apples, roasted delicata squash and constant simmering potpourri on the stove. With the seasonal change comes the social concept that it’s time to indulge in our favorite comfort foods and put our wellness and health on a figurative back burner. Yes, we’re all thinking it … cue food anxieties surrounding all social events invaded with cookies, cakes, and candy. I joke, but only kind of. While there is time and place for everything, I know this is a season that distracts a lot of people from their own health. Despite popular belief, there is a way to enjoy satisfying, seasonal, hearty meals without indulging in overly processed, sweetened foods that weaken our immune systems. I’m here to provide nutrient-dense recipes that will satisfy your seasonal desire for a comforting meal. So for whomever you are cooking for this time of year, maybe make this salad for a filling dinner instead of a baked casserole. It’s full of seasonal veggies, healthy fats, and proper amounts of protein. Perhaps serve it with a side of homemade whole-grain cornbread? Happy cooking and bon appétit!
Makes 4 servings
2 delicata squash
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cayenne (or paprika if sensitive to spice)
1 head baby lettuce gems, rinsed & dried
1 bag baby arugula
1 ripened pear, chopped (or apple)
1 container organic chicken tenders, grilled or baked
4 dried figs, thinly sliced
1/2 cup roasted walnut halves
1/2 cup crumbled organic sheep milk’s feta
Microgreens, for garnish
80 g apple cider vinegar
40 g maple syrup
20 g Dijon mustard
60 g organic extra virgin olive oil
1 small shallot, minced
- Slice the delicata squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and cut into thin rings, about 1/4” thick. Cut the zucchini into 1/2” pieces and toss both squashes in a medium bowl with 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp cayenne and a generous pinch of Real Salt. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the veggies evenly across the sheet. Bake at 400ºF for 15 minutes. Toss with a spatula and continue to cook for 15 minutes, until the delicata squash are softened and beginning to brown/crisp around the edges. Let cool.
- Meanwhile make the dressing by whisking together 80 g apple cider vinegar, 40 g maple syrup, and 20 g Dijon mustard in a small bowl. Slowly add 60 g olive oil, whisking as you pour to make an emulsified, creamy dressing. Season with a pinch of Real Salt, freshly cracked pepper, and the minced shallot. Whisk or mix with a fork until combined.