roasted butternut squash and quinoa salad

I don’t usually give you two recipes in a row with the same star, namely quinoa, but I am loving the fuel power of my newly discovered favorite health food.

It’s been -25 Celsius with a wind chill factor that makes it feel like -40*C outside for the last week. No matter how many layers of clothing I pull on, I can’t warm up. Cold salads don’t cut it for me this time of year. I need heat. Hot, nourishing meals to help me survive a climate that, I am sure, my ancestors mistakenly chose for their future generations. Geesh – who would willingly subject themselves to this!

Like the quinoa salad I posted last, this recipe can be adapted to whatever winter vegetables you like. Ralph came into the kitchen while I was rooting through the fridge and asked me what I was making. I wasn’t sure at that point. I found a butternut squash, bell and jalepeno peppers, onion, fennel and a few other things and started chopping.

It wasn’t until my fridge was empty and my chopping board was full that I decided to throw it all in a roasting dish and turn everything into a warm winter quinoa salad. While the vegetables roasted, I cooked the quinoa and made the dressing. To give the grain a bit more depth I used chicken stock instead of water. For the dressing, I cut back on the extra virgin olive oil because the vegetables were already roasting in lots. The tomato and balsamic vinegar combination work perfectly to balance the sweetness of the butternut squash. It was delicious warm and at room temperature. Hope this helps you stay warm!

Roasted Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad

Serves 6

Preheat oven 350*

I medium butternut squash , peeled, seeded and chunked
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and chunked
½ fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
A handful cherry tomatoes, halved
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup chicken stock – homemade or commercial
1 teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Toss everything together and place in a shallow roasting dish.
Cover and place in oven for 1 hour.

Meanwhile:

½ cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup chicken stock – homemade or commercial

Mix together in a medium saucepan and place over high heat.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat to minimum, cover pot and cook for 15 minutes
Remove pot from heat and allow to sit, covered, for an additional 5 minutes
Remove cover and fluff quinoa with fork

Dressing:

½ cup pezzatoni [diced plum tomatoes in a thick tomato puree]
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Combine ingredients in a small saucepan and warm gently

When vegetables have finished roasting, place in a large salad bowl along with the cooked quinoa.
Pour dressing over all, sprinkle with chopped basil and toss gently.

THE LOVE: The beauty of this salad is not crushing the roasted vegetables which will be quite soft after an hour in the oven so use a very light touch. If you use a commercial chicken stock, try to get hold of one with reduced salt. Better flavor and better for you!

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one year ago: chocolate raspberry buttercreams

Thanks for reading.

  • Anonymous

    Looks delish. Will give this a try when I have the girls over for lunch!!

  • looks amazing – i have never tried quinoa but i’m getting there. i think i would like it…