To borrow a sentiment from Teen Angst, “what the world needs now is another kale salad like I need a hole in my head” And yet, here you have it. This came out of the Cooking Light archives—an actual print version that was hanging around my cluttered pantry of angst. It was the answer to my prayers when my garden of tomatoes died back enough to reveal a whole lot of kabocha (buttercup) and delicata squash. I’ve made this with both types of squash and it was fantastic. I suspect it’d be grand with butternut as well.
To make this meal-worthy salad you’re basically massaging up a bed of kale with a touch of olive oil. Now don’t be coy—we’re no strangers to massaging kale. Roasted squash goes on top of that, followed by thinly sliced red onion for sass and plumped up dried cranberries for a little sweet and same fall color.
It took all my will NOT add nuts to this bed of goodness, but I resisted and did not miss them a bit. Neither did my nut-weary family.
- Bonus: This can be made ahead and hang out until dinner is served.
- Double Bonus: It travels like a champ and is easily assembled on site.
- Triple bonus: The leftovers are excellent, because we all know dressed kale can survive the apocalypse.
I hate to sounds bossy, but please make this now, so if you like it as much as I do you can sign up to bring it to Thanksgiving. I know…we’re not even at Halloween. But what can I say? Squash turns my crank. And now, on to pomegranates. Oh…yeah…baby! Happy Fall
Roasted Squash, Kale and Cranberry Salad
From Cooking Light
- 1/2 large unpeeled green or orange kabocha squash (about 5 lb.), cut into 12 (1/2-in.-thick) wedges (or delicata squash, seeded and cut in 1/2″ rounds)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 teaspoons coarsely ground coriander seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
- 6 tablespoons dried cranberries (or dried cherries to be tart and fancy)
- 6 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons mustard seeds
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly vertically sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 (7 1/2-oz.) bunch lacinato kale, stemmed and cut into 3/4-in.-wide strips (curly kale works fine too)
Preheat oven to 375°F
Combine squash, 1 tablespoon olive oil, coriander seeds, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl, tossing gently with hands to coat. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Cover with foil. Bake at 375°F for 10 minutes. Remove foil; bake 15 more minutes or until pumpkin is tender and browned, turning once.
While pumpkin roasts, combine cranberries, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard seeds, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Bring to a simmer; remove from heat. Steep 15 minutes or until almost all of the liquid is absorbed.
Place onion in a bowl of ice-cold water; let stand 10 minutes. Drain
Toss lemon juice, kale, remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt in a large bowl, massaging kale with hands to soften. Transfer kale to a large serving platter; top with pumpkin and onion. Sprinkle with cranberries.
Bringing it: Roast the squash, prep onions and cranberries and massage the kale in the privacy of your own home. Bring them all separately and assemble on a platter when you get to your destination. It can hang out until you’re ready to eat.