Hearty Kale Salad with Kabocha Squash, Pomegranate Seeds, and Toasted Hazelnuts

By • December 17, 2012 10 Comments

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Author Notes: I think of this as a perfect winter salad. Creamy kabocha squash adds heft and comfort to the dish, while a tart vinaigrette and pomegranate seeds liven it. You can serve it as a denser appetizer, or as a light meal. Gena Hamshaw

Serves 4-6

  • 1 Large bunch curly kale, stems removed and discarded, torn into bite sized pieces, washed, and spun dry
  • 1 Small kabocha squash (Japanese pumpkin), halved and seeded and cut into 1.5 inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons Olive oil, divided into 1 tbsp and 3 tbsp
  • 3/4 cup Pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 cup Skinned hazelnuts
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the squash in 1 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper on a baking sheet. Roast for 30-35 minutes, or until golden, stopping halfway through to stir.
  2. While squash is roasting, place the hazelnuts in a shallow baking dish (or a pie pan) and toast in the oven for 4-6 minutes, or until they are golden. Check them frequently and remove them the moment they start to get brown. Once they've cooled a little, chop them roughly and set aside.
  3. Whisk together the remaining olive oil, mustard, lemon, maple syrup, sea salt, and pepper. Pour 3 tbsp over the kale to begin with, and "massage" the kale well with your hands, till it's coated in the dressing and taking on a soft, almost wilted texture. Add the remaining dressing as needed and according to tastes. Add pomegranate seeds and hazelnuts.
  4. Once the squash has finished cooking and has cooled for 10-15 minutes, add it to the salad and serve.

More Great Recipes: Kale Salad|Vegetables|Salads|Entrees|Appetizers

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