Sunrise after Sandy! The calm after the storm wasn’t so calm.
Ina Garten is one of my favorite chefs, and I truly admire her ability to create festive dishes that are perfectly appropriate for all four seasons. A few years ago, on an episode of Barefoot Contessa, Garten featured a butternut squash and arugula salad, dressed with a sweet reduction of apple cider and shallots. I RETAINED the recipe in my mental cookbook, for future reference. Last night, while preparing for the ZEPHYR winds to turn into high-speed GUSTS, I made this recipe for my family, and they loved it! You will too.
Ingredients: 1.5 lb butternut squash, olive oil, 1tbsp pure maple syrup, salt and pepper, 3 tbsp dried cranberries, 3/4 cup apple cider, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 2 tbsp minced shallots, 2 tsp Dijon mustard, 4 ounces clean baby arugula, 1/2 cup toasted walnuts, 3/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
Peel and scoop the seeds out of the butternut squash. Cut it into 3/4″ chunks.
Toss the butternut squash with 2 tbsp olive oil, the maple syrup and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Place in a 400ºF oven for about 15 minutes.
Remove the squash from the oven and place the cranberries on top. Bake for another 5 minutes, or until the cranberries have plumped.
While the squash is roasting, mince the shallots.
In a small saucepan, combine the apple cider, apple cider vinegar and shallots. Bring to a boil over a medium-high heat and cook for 6-8 minutes, or until the mixture reduces to about 1/4 cup.
Remove the dressing from the flame, season with salt and pepper, and whisk in the Dijon mustard and 1/4 cup olive oil.
Place the arugula in a large bowl and top it with the squash, Parmesan cheese and the dressing.
Stay tuned for a guest blog by my friend, Sofia, in a few weeks!
- RETAIN= to keep
- ZEPHYR = a gentle breeze
- GUST = a short blast of wind