This recipe came about as many do in my kitchen—from trying to Iron Chef with what I have around. For context, I don’t often shop with a detailed list of the produce I need. Instead, I add generic comments like, “fruit”, “vegetables”, or “greens”. Alternatively, I may know that I want to make a salad, so will write, “stuff for salad”. Then when I get to the store or farmer’s market, I look for what is freshest, most delicious looking, and the best deal.
I usually end up with a random assortment of delicious-looking produce and then need to figure out what to do with it after the fact. You don’t need to be a chef to be able to do this in your kitchen—all you need is to learn a few basic cooking techniques. The basic techniques used in this recipe are roasting and making a vinaigrette. You will see these techniques repeated in recipes throughout this site. Practice them today and you’ll be able to whip up roasted vegetables or a delicious salad with anything you have on hand, any day of the week.Print
Kabocha Squash, Asian Pear, and Tangerine Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette & Hazelnuts
- Yield: 4 large salads 1x
- 1 small or medium kabocha squash
- 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 large Asian pear, quartered, cored, and sliced
- 1/3 cup roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 2–4 tangerines (or 1–2 oranges), segmented or peeled then sliced across the segments (to make stars)
- 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced on a bias
- 1/4 medium red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon agave nectar or honey
- Preheat oven to 350F. Cut squash in half through stem end. Use spoon to scoop seeds out and discard. Coat a small sheet pan with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Salt and pepper the cut side of the squash and place cut-side-down on the pan. Roast for approximately 40 minutes or until orange flesh is easily pierced with a fork but not mush (i.e. there’s a slight resistance to the fork). Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
- Balsamic Vinaigrette: In a small jar, combine balsamic vinegar, 1/2 cup olive oil, agave and a couple of pinches each of salt and pepper. Screw cap onto jar and shake vigorously until well combined. Set aside. Make sure to shake before each use to mix ingredients.
- Arrange slices of Asian pear on 4 dinner plates. Slice squash into wedges as pictured and arrange on plates atop the pears. Top with tangerines (or oranges), celery and onions. Sprinkle with hazelnuts. Drizzle balsamic vinaigrette over ingredients on each plate and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve.
- Kabocha squash can be replaced with any winter squash. Try roasted butternut squash.
Nutritional Info (per serving): Calories 422, Total Fat 30.3g, Saturated Fat 3.7g, Cholesterol 0mg, Sodium 91mg, Total Carbohydrate 40.2g, Dietary Fiber 6.9g, Sugars 21.1g, Protein 4.5g, Vitamin A 52%, Vitamin C 87%, Calcium 12%, Iron 10%