Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Wild Rice Salad with Butternut Squash and Pomegranate

There's been a lot on my mind lately. It's funny because as I've started writing this, I've typed out at least four different introductions to this post, only to hit the backspace key over and over. There's so much swirling around in this brain of mine, yet only so much can be put into words here. I'm trying to make sense of everything, trying to feel how I truly feel, and really listen. It's amazing how quickly things can change. That's all I can say.
This salad is one that was thought up at the last minute, and it utilizes everything I had in my kitchen at the time. I always like to keep a batch of some sort of cooked grain on hand for throwing into a salad or tossing into a soup. And this time, I had a wild rice blend cooked and ready to be used. I threw in some roasted butternut squash along with sweet caramelized onions and pomegranate. Then, I tossed it with some salty feta, slivered kale, and toasted walnuts. Sweet, salty, chewy, and's what makes up the perfect textures for a salad. Plus, how could you say no to those fall colors?

Wild Rice Salad with Butternut Squash and Pomegranate 

3 cups cooked wild rice blend (or any other grain of your choice)
1 butternut squash
1 large onion
3-4 large leaves of kale
1 pomegranate
1 cup of walnuts
feta or goat cheese (optional)

6 Tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt

1. Preheat oven to 375. Cook your grain of choice. While the grains are cooking, peel butternut squash and remove the seeds. Cut into cubes. Put the butternut cubes on a large sheet pan. Thinly slice the onion. Put onion slices on the sheet pan with the butternut squash. Drizzle olive oil over the vegetables and sprinkle with salt. Toss to coat. Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes, until the onion begins to brown and the squash is tender.

2. While the grains cook and the squash bakes, thinly slice the kale. Remove the seeds from the pomegranate. Make the dressing by combining the dressing ingredients above in a small bowl and wisk well. Crumble up the feta or goat cheese.

3. Remove squash from the oven and let cool slightly (about 10 minutes). Assemble the salad by first combining the grains with the dressing in a large bowl. Then add the butternut squash and onions,  kale, pomegranate seeds, and walnuts. Toss very gently until just combined. Finish with a sprinkling of cheese.

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  1. This looks like a great recipe and a great use for pomegranate seeds, which I love. Thanks for sharing it, and I hope that the changes you referred to are good ones, or, if not, will pass over quickly!

  2. Squash and pomegranates - definitely 2 grocery store staples at this time of year!!

  3. This salad is so gorgeous! Somehow I have never combined butternut squash with pomegranate. Now I want to try that combination asap!

    1. Thanks so much for commenting! I'm a big fan of your blog. And yes, pomegranate + butternut = total deliciousness.

  4. thanks for sharing these healthy foods i feel like to eat these yummy dishes
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