Roasted pumpkin, Serrano ham & Manchego cheese autumn salad

November 10, 2009
4 Ratings
  • Serves four to six
Author Notes

A sugar pumpkin has been sitting on our window sill since Hallowe'en. After smiling at it for several days, I finally decided to roast it and combine with two of my favorite Spanish offerings: Serrano ham and Manchego cheese. Matched with a hint of smoked paprika and a wildflower honey and grilled lemon vinaigrette, it makes for an interesting appetizer. Feel free to substiute with prosciutto, if you can't find Serrano ham at your grocer. —menumaniac

What You'll Need
  • For the salad
  • 1 sugar or pie pumpkin, peeled, cleaned and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • Pumpkin seeds, reserved from pumpkin and cleaned
  • 4 cups arugula
  • 4 thin slices of Serrano ham, torn into pieces
  • 1/4 cup Manchego cheese, shaved
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • For the grilled lemon & honey vinaigrette
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons wildflower honey (regular honey is fine too!)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh ground pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, toss 1-inch pumpkin cubes with olive oil and thyme. Place in single layer on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake for 30-40 minutes. Check halfway through and turn if neccessary.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a small pot of well salted water to a boil. Add pumpkin seeds. Simmer for 10 minutes. Drain. Toss with a smattering of kosher salt and smoked paprika. Place in single layer on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. (You can cook these while the pumpkin is roasting, just keep an eye on it because the seeds can burn rather quickly.)
  4. For the dressing, grill or broil the lemon, flesh side down for about 5 minutes. Cool. Juice about 3 tbs of lemon juice into a small bowl. Combine with honey and a pinch of fresh ground pepper. Slowly whisk in olive oil until you get your desired consistency. Taste and adjust flavors as neccessary.
  5. To prepare the salad - in a large bowl, toss arugula and vinaigrette. Place arugula on four salad plates or you can leave in the large bowl to serve family style. Top with roasted pumpkin, Serrano Ham, Manchego cheese and roasted pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!
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4 Reviews

menumaniac November 13, 2009
eatlivetravelwrite: I agree. Two of the reasons that I like this dish are because it's not too heavy and the pumpkin is not too sweet. I find that pumpkin is sweet enough!
Mardi M. November 13, 2009
Yum this looks incredible. An nice alternative to some pumpkin dishes which can be a bit heavy....
menumaniac November 12, 2009
Thanks Maria! Although it was more time consuming than a weeknight salad, it felt good to use up the entire pumpkin and it was relatively simple. I don't enjoy complicated flavors.
mariaraynal November 11, 2009
Love the flavor combinations and the grilled lemon/honey dressing. Very creative.