Roasted Butternut Squash and Arugula Salad with Cranberries and Cider Vinaigrette
- 1 small to medium butternut squash, peeled and cut into bite size pieces
- Olive or canola oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup, agave or honey
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tbs dried cranberries
- 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice
- 2 tbs cider vinegar
- 2 tbs chopped scallion
- 4 oz baby arugula, washed and spun dry
- 1/2 cup walnuts halves, toasted
- 1 granny smith, braeburn, honey crisp or other apple of choice, cored and cut into bite size pieces (do last to prevent browning)
- Goat, blue or (my favorite) gorgonzola cheese to garnish
Preheat the oven to 400.
Place the butternut squash in a bowl. Toss with olive oil, the maple syrup, salt and pepper and toss. Put on a cookie sheet in a single layer and roast the squash for 15 – 20 minutes, until tender. While the squash is roasting, combine the apple cider and vinegar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the cider is reduced to about 1/4 cup. Remove from heat and whisk in the mustard, 1/3 cup olive or canola oil, scallions and salt and pepper. Place the arugula in a large salad bowl and toss with enough vinaigrette to lightly cover. Plate the dressed arugula, top with the roasted squash, walnuts, apple slices and cheese. Spoon extra vinaigrette over the salad to moisten and toss well. Serve and wait for the compliments.