Warm Roasted Pumpkin Salad with Maple Tahini Dressing

Warm Roasted Pumpkin Salad with Maple Tahini Dressing
Anita Schecter
Ratings
  • Total: 60 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 45 mins
  • Yield: 4 Servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
209 Calories
14g Fat
19g Carbs
7g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 Servings
Amount per serving
Calories 209
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 152mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Protein 7g
Calcium 194mg 15%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If salads seem like light summer fare, think again. Heartier salads with roasted vegetables are perfect for cooler weather. And autumn's pumpkins and other squash are not just for pie but work perfectly in savory applications as well.

Winter squash varieties differ from their summer cousins in that they are harvested and eaten as mature fruit, meaning when the seeds have matured and the skin has hardened to a tough rind. They're low in calories and high in fiber, potassium and fiber. And, when roasted, they're sweet and delicious.

Choose darker greens for a cool weather salad. Spinach, kale and romaine are sturdy enough to stand up to the roasted squash and they are loaded with nutrients. And the slightly bitter flavors of the dark leafy greens pair up really well with the natural sweetness of the squash. Likewise, a creamy tahini dressing, with its slightly bitter sesame flavor, will go well with a touch of maple syrup whisked into it.

If you find regular pumpkins too cumbersome to handle, don't be afraid to use some of their squash cousins. The sweetest is butternut squash, and it's a popular favorite. But try roasting a calabaza squash which has a sweet butternut-like flavor and seeds that can be roasted like a pumpkin's as a snack. Acorn squash is a bit less sweet but has a distinct hazelnut flavor. And kabocha squash has a smooth, sweet flesh and a flavor resembling sweet potato. Other tasty options you might find at the grocery store or farmer's market are carnival, delicata, autumn cup, gold nugget and dumpling squash.

Whatever your favorite, these warm roasted salads should be a hit with the entire family.

Ingredients

  • For the Salad:
  • 1 whole pumpkin or other winter squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups assorted greens such as baby kale, baby spinach and baby romaine
  • 1/4 cup roasted pumpkin seeds (optional)
  • For the Maple Tahini Dressing:
  • 1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. Cut the pumpkin or other winter squash (such as butternut or acorn squash) in half. Scoop out the seeds and drizzle the flesh with the tablespoon of olive oil.

  3. Place the pumpkin on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast in the oven for approximately 45 minutes or until the flesh is tender. Cut into large wedges and pull off the peel. Note that if you are working with a softer flesh squash, like butternut, you can peel the squash first with a vegetable peeler, remove the seeds and cut it into chunks. Then toss with the olive oil and roast as above.

  4. Make the dressing by whisking together the tahini, water, lemon juice, maple syrup, salt and black pepper until you have a smooth and creamy consistency.

  5. Assemble the salad by placing a bed of the assorted greens on a plate, topping with the warm roasted squash, sprinkling on the pumpkin seeds, if using, and drizzling with the maple tahini dressing. Serve immediately.