Butternut Squash Salad with Maple Vinaigrette

October 1, 2011

This butternut squash salad  with maple vinaigrette is one of my absolute favorite salads.  This salad is composed with crisp spinach leaves, roasted sweet squash, salty bacon, and nutty pecans- it is fall in one bite.  Even better, it is tossed in maple vinaigrette that is accented with mustard and sherry vinegar.  This is the must-make dish of the season

Butternut Squash Salad with Maple Vinaigrette

Ingredients for the Salad:
1 packet 125 gm spinach leaves
5 slices of bacon
1 cup pecans
Ingredients for Vinaigrette:
1/4 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
Method to prepare Vinaigrette: Place Maple syrup in a small pan, bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and allow syrup to reduce by about half. In a small bowl, whisk together the reduced maple syrup with the vinegar, whisk in the Dijon mustard, then whisk in the oil until mixture is emulsified. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Method to prepare the salad: Washed mix greens and spinach leaves and set aside. Remove skin and seeds of Butternut squash and into cubes/dice (about 3/4-inch). Slices of bacon, sliced crosswise into thin strips and fried until just crisp, drained. Spray some oil on the pan and roast pecans. Place diced butternut squash on rimmed baking sheet, toss with a tablespoon olive oil to coat, then sprinkle lightly with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Roast in hot oven turning pieces once or twice until just tender but not mushy. Remove from oven and allow to cool

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