This festive winter salad bursting with flavor and color, nourishing and delicious, is a delectable addition to any table.
How to Enjoy:
first course, side salad or main
½ pound kabocha squash (one-quarter squash)
½ pound butternut squash (one-half squash), or other winter squash, such as delicata
2 tablespoons vegetable stock
1 tablespoon freshly squeeze lemon juice, or dry white wine
1 cup pomegranate seeds, from one medium pomegranate
1 cup crispy walnuts, recipe here
½ cup chili-lime spiced pumpkin seeds, recipe here
½ pound (or one large bunch) arugula
1 recipe pomegranate balsamic vinaigrette, recipe here
1. One to two days in advance: Prepare the crispy walnuts and pumpkins seeds according to the following recipe. Prepare the spice pepitas.
2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
3. Prepare the squash: Cut off the tops and bottoms of the squash with a sharp knife and then cut in half. Scoop out the seeds and place the squash halves flesh side down on a cutting board. Slice into ¼-inch half-moons.
4. In a large bowl, toss the squash with the stock and lemon juice (or wine) until well coated. Transfer to the bottom of a broiler pan or rimmed baking sheet, and roast for 10 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, prepare the pomegranate: Cut off the blossom end, and score the outside of the fruit from pole to pole into six sections. Using a paring knife, gently pull the fruit apart in sections. Submerge the sections in a bowl of cold water and then bend the rind backward to release the seeds. Pull out any stragglers and let the seeds sink to the bottom of the bowl. Discard the rind and any bits of membrane that float to the surface and drain the seeds in a colander. Place seeds in a bowl lined with paper towel and set aside.
6. Remove the squash from the oven. Flip and roast for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until tender and brown on the edges. Remove from oven; set aside to cool. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place the crispy walnuts on a baking sheet and bake 5-6 minutes until toasty and fragrant; set aside.
7. To serve: Using your hands, toss the arugula with a few spoonfuls of vinaigrette; coat evenly and arrange the arugula on a large serving platter. Top with the roasted squash, pomegranate seeds, toasted walnuts, and spiced pepitas. Drizzle with the vinaigrette and serve the remaining on the side.
This recipe qualifies for the whole-food plant-based (WFPB) designation, meaning that it is made of only of whole plant foods and does not contain any extracted ingredients, such as sugar or oil, that would damage the body’s endothelium (the inner most lining of the arteries).