Butternut Apple Salad

Fall has arrived in the northeast and with it comes winter squash in all its glory. Nothing better than a roasted vegetable salad combined with nuts and greens, both raw and cooked. Simple and easy to make these kinds of salads can be made from dinner leftovers and just tossed with a mildly sweet vinaigrette. For this particular recipe I was inspired by the crisp Macoun apples, buttercup squash, fresh beets and their greens. Nothing like beet greens to move me to rapturous tears. Not sure what that says about me, but I just love the taste of fresh greens. I served it for the Transition Phase of the Body Rejuvenation Cleanse and everyone loved it. It is a great meal to take for lunch the next day.

The Buttercup Edamame Rice Salad was created for my recent Herbs and Spices cooking class. Even with the time it took to peel the buttercup squash it was worth the labor. Feel free to substitute butternut or another winter squash in either of these recipes. You can also cut your work time in half and buy frozen cubed winter squash and roast them instead. Opt for the organic brands to eliminate any chemicals from the recipe.

Butternut Apple Salad

Serves 6

2 cups Butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 ½ cups fresh beets, peeled and cubed
1 firm crisp apple, cored and cubed
1 cup fennel bulb, cut into thin strips
2 cups beet greens, cooked and chopped
Boston Bibb lettuce or Arugula

Dressing
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. Ume Plum vinegar or sea salt
3 Tbs. golden balsamic vinegar
1 Tbs. maple syrup or pinch of stevia powder
1/4 cup whole almonds, toasted

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking pan with oil.
2. Toss butternut cubes and beets with 2 tablespoons of oil and arrange on pan. Bake until tender and slightly browned, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven when done and cool.
3. On a separate baking sheet toss the apple and fennel with 2 tablespoons of oil and arrange on pan. Bake until tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven when done and cool.
4. Whisk together the remaining oil with vinegar and maple syrup and set aside.
5. In a medium bowl combine the squash, beets, apple and fennel turning gently.
6. Place Boston Bibb lettuce or arugula on individual salad plates and spoon the salad over the greens. 7. Top with the dressing and toasted almonds and serve.

Edamame Buttercup Rice Salad
Serves 4

2 cups Edamame
2 cups Buttercup squash, peeled and cubed
1 ½ cups cooked brown rice
1/3 cup currents
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
1/4 cup sesame oil
2 Tbs. toasted sesame oil
1/2 tsp. Ume Plum vinegar or sea salt
3 Tbs. brown rice vinegar
¼ cup fresh parsley, minced
¼ cup fresh basil, minced

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking pan with oil.
2. Toss buttercup cubes with 2 tablespoons of sesame oil and arrange on pan. Bake until tender and slightly browned, about 30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to water and cook frozen edamame until tender, about 5 minutes.
4. Whisk together the dressing ingredients and set aside.
5. In a medium bowl toss everything together with the dressing and serve on a bed of fresh Arugula.