It’s that in-between time, when we’re so ready for spring, but it’s coming way too slowly. This hearty yet refreshing vegetarian salad celebrates fresh springtime flavors, even if you may still need your winter coat. It features sweet and velvety kabocha squash, winter greens, quinoa, and feta tossed in a bright poppy seed orange dressing. It makes a great light lunch with crusty bread, or a side dish paired with Cave de Ribeauville Pinot Gris Collection.
5-6 slices of kabocha squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large clementine oranges, zest of 1 clementine
4 handfuls winter greens (enough for 2 servings)
1 cup quinoa, cooked based on package-instructions
1/4 cup greek yogurt
1/4 cup feta cheese
For the dressing:
2 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 teaspoon poppy seeds
salt & pepper to taste
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil or pumpkin seed oil
Make the dressing by whisking together the sherry wine vinegar, orange juice and poppy seeds. Whisk in the olive oil until emulsified. Set aside.
In a skillet, heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Cook the kabocha squash slices for 4 minutes each side. Sprinkle salt and pepper and set aside. You can also do this on a grill instead.
Zest the clementines & slice off the top and bottom of the oranges. Setting them on their flat bottoms, carefully slice away the peel and pith, leaving the fruit completely intact. Slice the oranges vertically based on the marks of each slice.
In a large bowl, combine the winter leaves, cooked quinoa, feta cheese and clementine zest. Add the orange slices and drizzle 1/2 the dressing over the mixture. Toss and add remaining dressing as desired.
Spread a few tablespoons of Greek yogurt on the serving plate. Heap on a plate with the salad and kabocha slices and top with more feta cheese and remaining dressing.
Chef Garima, an investment-banker turned baker-chef is the founder & CEO of breakingbread.co , an events & catering company. She is an alumni of Le Cordon Bleu, Paris & has been featured as Top 15 in reality television show- MasterChef. Chef Garima is a culinary innovator who speaks in various institutions, globally about smart & efficient ways to use food as an eradicator of health issues, poverty & induce employment.