Roasted delicata squash salad with quinoa, creamy goat cheese, fresh herbs, hazelnuts and rich balsamic. An autumn-inspired, plant-powered dish loaded with flavor, texture and nutrients. GUYZZSSS. It was 59 degrees when I woke up this morning. 59!! Fall has officially arrived in Bama. WOO! Now give me all the squash, pumpkin and apples so I can bask in their seasonal glory.
And since you guys already know I’m pumpkin-obsessed, has anyone tried the pumpkin KIND bars? How about the pumpkin Larabars? Pumpkin Cliff bars? Yes, yes and YES to all three. I’m *this* close to needing an intervention. Of all the delectably rich winter squash varieties, delicata, with its oblong shape and beautiful green striations, is the easiest to work with. It’s SUPER low maintenance and doesn’t even require peeling(!!). The skin softens beautifully when the squash is roasted and actually adds welcomed texture to the final product.
An edible peel is a seriously incredible invention by Mother Nature.
Delicata are also much smaller than most winter squash varieties and actually tend to have a richer flavor and creamier consistency. I’m telling ya, one taste of their caramelized roasted flesh and you’ll be hooked.I like to keep my delicata salads simple, but delicious. For a boost of protein, I added my favorite super-grain, quinoa, and a handful of crunchy hazelnuts. Also in the mix is a bounty of fresh herbs and a generous dollop of creamy goat cheese (KILLER compliment to any roasted winter squash). The salad is ribboned with balsamic reduction and finished off with jewels of pomegranate seeds for a sophisticated edge.
It’s pretty enough to showcase, yet easy enough for weeknight cooking. We love it.This versatile side dish complements just about any main, or you can pair it with soup or a sammie for a satisfying lunch.
It’s also highly customizable – you can choose to include or exclude any toppings you like! Well, except for the goat cheese. My heart will cry if you leave that out. I’m so looking forward to picking up more squash at the farmers market this weekend and coming up with more fun creations. Gah! I just love fall produce. Let me know what you guys would like to see!! Sky is the limit!
If you make this recipe, be sure to tag #dishingouthealth so I can see your beautiful creations!
- 2 medium-sized delicata squash, halved lengthwise and cut into ~1/2 inch slices
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- ½ tsp sea salt
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp coriander
- ½ cup cooked quinoa or farro
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled
- 3 tbsp crushed nuts of choice (I used hazelnuts)
- 2 tbsp balsamic reduction
- Optional topping: pomegranate seeds
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Slice delicata squash lengthwise, scoop out seeds and membrane (discard) and cut into ~1/2 inch slices. Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, flipping to coat each side. Add sea salt, rosemary, garlic powder and coriander, evenly distributing seasoning. Arrange squash slices so that their flesh is touching the pan and there is no overcrowding. Bake for 12 minutes, flip, and bake for another 10-12 minutes, until they develop a nice char.
- Divide quinoa evenly on 3 plates. Top with roasted squash, reserving a few quinoa grains to sprinkle over top.
- Top with fresh parsley, goat cheese, nuts and a drizzle of balsamic. Add pomegranate seeds if desired.