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Recipe: Warm Roasted Squash Salad with Kale & Quinoa

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Colorful, warm, and very satisfying, this salad combines dark leafy greens, roasted butternut squash and organic red quinoa.  Pronounced “keen-wah”, this ancient rice-like ‘super-food’ is loaded with antioxidants and heart-healthy nutrients. You can serve this salad with grilled salmon for added protein – but it’s a full meal all by itself.  Try it during fasting season too. Many thanks to Brother Darryl Ike for supplying our kale from his own garden.

Genesis 2:9 – And out of the ground the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food.

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Warm Roasted Squash Salad with Kale & Quinoa

½ butternut squash, cut into ½” cubes

2 yellow Summer squash, sliced lengthwise into ¼ ” slices

1 bunch of kale, washed and chopped into ½” strips

1 head of red leaf lettuce, washed and torn into large pieces

½ cup of organic red quinoa

1 cup of water

¼ cup of chopped toasted pecans

I clove of garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

2 teaspoons of seasoned salt

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of coarse-ground black pepper

Orange Dijon Dressing (below)

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Line a baking sheet with foil and set aside. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the cubed butternut squash with cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of olive oil, and seasoned salt.

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Toss until coated.

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Spread in a single layer onto baking sheet.

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Place onto the top rack of the oven and roast about 15 minutes until tender*.  Remove from oven and set aside.

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In a medium frying pan, add one teaspoon of olive oil; sauté garlic until light brown.  Add kale and ½ cup of water; season with ½ teaspoon of salt, sauté about 10 minutes until bright green and softened. Remove to a bowl; keep warm.

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In a medium saucepan,  combine the quinoa, water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a medium pot.

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Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer until the water i absorbed and the quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes.

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Remove from heat and leave covered 10 minutes. Remove quinoa to a small bowl; keep warm.

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Brush yellow squash with 1 tablespoon of olive oil; season with seasoned salt and remaining black pepper. 

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Brush griddle with two teaspoons of olive oil.

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Heat; add squash slices to griddle.

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After 5 minutes, check for grill marks; then turn.  Grill remaining side; remove to dish, keep warm.
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Now that you have all of the elements prepared, it’s time to assemble!

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Add pecans to the quinoa; blend.

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In a large bowl, add lettuce.

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Add kale to lettuce. Add dressing; toss.

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Reserve 1/4 of the quinoa blend to use as garnish. Add remaining quinoa-pecan blend to the lettuce-kale mixture.  

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Spoon mixture into a large serving bowl.

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Layer with squash and remaining quinoa.

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Serves 4.

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  *HELPFUL TIPS:

  • This recipe has several moving parts, so it might help to prepare some items ahead of time.
  • While the butternut squash is roasting, you can use the time to prepare other elements, like the kale, lettuce or dressing.
  • You can also substitute cooked barley or brown rice for the quinoa.
  • ORANGE DIJON DRESSING: Combine ¼ cup of orange juice, ¼ cup of apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon of coarse mustard, 1 teaspoon of honey.  Mix well. Enjoy!

All photos and recipe, © 2014, Karen Lascaris.