Supercharge Your Fitness
Celebrate the flavors of Autumn with a delicious and aromatic butternut squash, a winter squash with a sweet, nutty taste similar to pumpkin. It’s a great source of vitamin E, folate, vitamin A and beta-carotene and dietary fiber. A cup of butternut squash has more potassium than a banana! Butternut squash is perfect, roasted in the oven for a perfect side dish, blended into a creamy soup or spiralized to make veggie noodles.
The Butternut Squash Salad with Cider-Spiked Vinaigrette salad is a wonderful addition to an everyday meal or a holiday celebration. Roasting caramelizes the squash, giving it a natural sweetness; cranberries add a chewy texture and tartness; vinegar provides a sour feature and walnuts provide a crunchy goodness and omega-3 fatty acids. When you build a salad think about a variety of flavors and textures and instead of worrying about giving up certain foods, consider what ingredients you can add to make it nutritious and delicious.
Butternut Squash Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette
1 - 1½ lb. butternut squash, peeled and diced
1-2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp pure maple syrup
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 Tbsp dried cranberries
¾ cup apple cider
2 Tbsp cider vinegar
2 Tbsp minced shallots
2 tsp Dijon mustard
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 cups mixed greens, washed
½ cup walnut halves, toasted
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place diced squash on a baking sheet pan. Mix together olive oil and maple syrup and drizzle over the squash. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss. Roast the squash for 15 minutes, turning once until tender.
- Add the cranberries to the pan and roast for another 5 minutes.
- To make the vinaigrette, combine apple cider, vinegar and shallots in a small saucepan and bring to boil over medium-high heat. Cook for 6-8 minutes until cider is reduced to about ¼ cup. Remove from heat and whisk in the mustard, ½ cup olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.
- Place the mixed greens in a large salad bowl and add the roasted squash mixture and walnuts. Drizzle vinaigrette over the salad and toss well. Grate Parmesan cheese for extra flavor.
Yield: 4 servings
Source: Hypertension Cookbook for Dummies, C.Kleckner and R. Rust, December 2011, John Wiley & Sons, Inc
Cindy Kleckner, RDN, LD, FAND is a registered dietitian nutritionist and culinary expert, a Fellow of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and author of Hypertension Cookbook for Dummies, 2011 and the DASH Diet For Dummies, 2014. Email Cindy for a personalized demonstration of this fun and easy way to add more nutrients to your meals at 214-293-5306.