Fall Salad with Squash and Apples


As you may know, I tend to avoid salad at all costs. It’s so difficult to find a (vegetarian) salad that is delicious and satisfying. Guess what? THIS IS THAT DELICIOUS, SATISFYING VEGETARIAN SALAD. It’s honestly my favorite salad that I’ve ever had. I really, really love it. It also helps that I love fall and this salad definitely screams fall.

However, I’m not going to lie and tell you that this comes together quickly. Roasting and toasting and hard boiling and chop chop chopping everything makes this more time-consuming than many other salads, but I promise it is seriously worth it. Since there are only two of us, I split all the ingredients into 2 bowls and 2 containers, so we get delicious dinner salads and lunch salads for the next day!


For the apple, I always use , but I’m sure any will work. I also usually make this with delicata squash, but I’ve also made it with acorn squash and am sure almost any roasted squash would work here. I also recommend goat cheese but have also used feta, which was just as delicious.


For hard-boiling eggs, I usually cook them the night before or a few hours before I want to eat them. Here is the method that I always use:

  1. Place cold eggs in a pot and cover with 1-2 inches of cold water.
  2. Bring to rolling boil.
  3. If you have a gas stove (like me), reduce heat to low and simmer gently for 1 minute. If you have an electric stove, turn off the burner but leave the pot on it.
  4. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and let rest for 10 minutes. A few additional minutes should be okay if you forget your eggs; it’s very difficult to overcook using this method.
  5. Run cold water over the eggs for 1-2 minutes to stop the cooking process. Place the eggs in a container and refrigerate until ready to use.
  6. When ready to eat, always peel eggs under running water. It makes life so much easier.

This recipe is: vegetarian, gluten free

Ingredients:

  • 1 head lettuce, washed, dried, and chopped into bite size pieces
  • 1 apple
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs (see above directions for perfect hard-boiled eggs!)
  • 1 delicata squash
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • pinch of kosher salt and pepper
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup walnuts
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup goat cheese crumbles
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1 tbsp)

For the vinaigrette:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp fresh minced thyme (or 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves)
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Slice the squash down the center and scoop out the seeds. Slice the squash into 1/2″ thick half moons. Toss the slices with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and spread onto a baking sheet. Roast for 30-35 minutes, until golden brown.
  2. Slice and core the apple. Cover slices with lemon juice.
  3. Peel and slice the hard boiled eggs.
  4. Toast the pumpkin seeds and walnuts in the oven. The seeds will toast quickly, 2-3 minutes, so watch closely. The walnuts will likely take 4-6 minutes. When the walnuts have cooled, chop them into small pieces.
  5. Make the vinaigrette by mixing all ingredients in a jar and shaking to combine.
  6. Assemble the salad as a large platter or split into 4 bowls. Start with washed lettuce and top with rows of squash, eggs, apples, walnuts, dried cranberries, and goat cheese. Sprinkle pumpkin seeds over the top. Pour desired amount of dressing over the salad or serve on the side.

Serves 4.

 

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