Winter Squash and Quinoa Salad

Winter Squash and Quinoa Salad

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Credit: Rajeev Patgaonkar, CEC, AAC, executive sous chef, Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center and Chef & Child Central regional director
Chef & Child Ingredient of the Month, October 2013


2 lbs. med. Butternut squash, peeled, cubed
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
¾ teaspoon sea salt, divided
1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
16 ounces baby spinach, rinsed well
Freshly ground pepper
8 ounces cilantro lime dressing
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 cup hulled pumpkin seeds

Cilantro Lime Dressing:
1 bunch cilantro, rinsed and stems trimmed
1 cup baby spinach, rinsed well
½ cup fresh lime juice
¼ cup olive oil
1 jalapeno, seeded, chopped
2-3 tablespoons honey, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste


1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Place cubed squash on baking sheet and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and ¼ teaspoon salt. Spread in single layer. Roast for 10-15 minutes, until tender and slightly browned. Set aside to cool slightly.

2. Place quinoa in 4-quart pot over medium-high heat. Stir until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Add 2 cups water; bring to boil over high heat. Simmer, uncovered, until quinoa turns translucent and water is almost absorbed, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, place lid on pot and let it rest. Cool on sheet pan until ready to use.

3. In a large bowl, place roasted squash, quinoa, spinach, cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Drizzle with dressing and toss gently to coat. Serve in bowl or place and top with a few more pumpkin seeds and cilantro.

For cilantro lime dressing:
Process cilantro in food processor until finely minced. Add lime juice and process for a few seconds. Slowly pour olive oil and process until dressing emulsifies. Add honey, salt, pepper and process to combine.


Chef & Child, Salad, Vegetarian

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