I love putting grains in my salad. It turns a light side dish into a hearty main course. For Thanksgiving, I’ve put together this salad highlighting one of my favorite vegetables: kabocha squash. I’m not typically a fan of squash, but kabocha squash is something else– it’s got this amazing flavor that puts butternut squash to shame! This salad is packed with wheatberries, crispy roast shiitakes, fragrant hazelnuts, peppery baby arugula and creamy French feta, and all comes together with a light tahini-honey dressing. Yup, it’s a whole lot going on in there, but it’ll be the highlight at your Thanksgiving dinner!

Kabocha squash salad

With kabocha squash, you only need to rinse the outside and no need to peel the skin. You can also serve the salad with cubed kabocha instead of wedges.

Kabocha squash

Roast your kabocha squash by cutting the squash into wedges. Preheat the oven 400 degrees. Toss the wedges with extra virgin olive oil and lightly season with sea salt and black pepper. Roast the squash in the oven for about 25-30 minutes until tender.

Kabocha squash roasted

Remove the stems from the shiitake mushrooms and rub the dirt off the caps with a damp paper towel. Cut into thin slices. Toss in some extra virgin olive oil and lightly season with sea salt and black pepper. Roast in the 400 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until they begin to get dark and crispy around the edges. (You can also roast the shiitake and squash together, just remember to remove the shiitake before the squash).

Shiitakes and hazelnuts

Toast the hazelnuts in a small pan over medium heat. Keep the hazelnuts moving to prevent them from burning. When you begin to smell their fragrance, remove them from the pan. Allow them to cool and roughly chop. To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice, vinegar, tahini, honey and extra virgin olive oil and whisk together. Season with salt and pepper.

Kabocha Squash Salad | HonestlyYUM

To assemble the salad, arrange the squash wedges on a plate.

Kabocha squash salad

Combine the arugula, hazelnuts, shiitake mushrooms, and wheatberries in a bowl and toss with dressing.

Squash salad

Place the salad between the wedges and scatter several cubes of French feta across the salad.

Kaboch squash salad bite

KABOCHA SQUASH SALAD

Ingredients:

  • 1 kabocha squash
  • 1/2 pound of shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup of wheatberries, cooked
  • 1 large handful of hazelnuts
  • 2 large handfuls of baby arugula or kale
  • French feta
  • juice of 1 large lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of tahini
  • 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for roasting kabocha squash and mushrooms)
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  • Roast your kabocha squash by cutting the squash into wedges. Preheat the oven 400 degrees. Toss the wedges with extra virgin olive oil and lightly season with sea salt and black pepper.
  • Roast the squash in the oven for about 25-30 minutes until tender.
  • Remove the stems from the shiitake mushrooms and rub the dirt off the caps with a damp paper towel. Cut into thin slices. Toss in some extra virgin olive oil and lightly season with sea salt and black pepper. Roast in the 400 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until they begin to get dark and crispy around the edges. (You can also roast the shiitake and squash together, just remember to remove the shiitake before the squash).
  • Toast the hazelnuts in a small pan over medium heat. Keep the hazelnuts moving to prevent them from burning. When you begin to smell their fragrance, remove them from the pan. Allow them to cool and roughly chop
  • To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice, vinegar, tahini, honey and extra virgin olive oil and whisk together. Season with salt and pepper.
  • To assemble the salad, arrange the squash wedges on a plate. Combine the arugula, hazelnuts, shiitake mushrooms, and wheatberries in a bowl and toss with dressing. Place the salad between the wedges and top with several cubes of French feta.

(images by HonestlyYUM)