squash and lentil salad with arugula

 

squash and lentil salad-5
I like to think of this salad more of an assembly than cooking.  The lentils, squash and salad dressing can all be made in advance.  For quick meals during the week I try to have lentils or beans cooked and in the fridge along with some roasted vegetables.  In the fall that can mean squash, sweet potatoes or sugar pumpkin (if you’ve got one form your farm share).  Any of these an be used in the recipe.  I used to separate the seeds from squash to cook until last year when I saw someone leaving them in to roast.  That is my preferred method now, but if you do not like that just scoop out the seeds and save for another use.  They add texture to the salad.  To cook lentils, cover with cold water in a sauce pan, add a pinch of salt and simmer until tender yet firm, about 30 minutes.  I generally like to use the French green lentils as they hold their shape in salads.  Not intentionally, this salad satisfies many diets that exclude gluten/grains, animal products and nuts.  If you do make the dressing in advance, make sure to check the seasonings just before you are about to use it in case it needs more salt.
squash and lentil salad-2
squash and lentil salad-3

 

squash and lentil salad-4
Ingredients
1 medium delicata squash
4 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for squash
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or a nice red wine vinegar
1 small shallot, diced
2.5 ounces arugula
1/2 cup of cooked, French green lentils (see headnote)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
squash and lentil salad-7
squash and lentil salad-8
Process
Preheat oven to 425 degrees
Trim each end of the squash then split the squash lengthwise
Slice each squash half into 1/4” pieces and add to a half sheet tray
Drizzle the squash with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and lightly with pepper
Roast for about 20 minutes, taking care not to move the squash for the first 15 minutes so it can brown
Take the squash out of the oven and set aside to cool
While the squash is roasting, make the vinaigrette
Place the shallot in a large bowl with a large pinch of salt
Pour the vinegar over the shallot and macerate for about 5 minutes
Add the 4 tablespoons olive oil to the shallot and vinegar mix to combine adding a pinch more salt and some pepper
Toss the lentils with 2 tablespoons of the dressing
Put the arugula on a serving plate
Arrange the squash slices on top of the arugula
Top with the lentils
Serve, passing the dressing on the side

squash and lentil salad

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