After making copious amounts of Rivka's challah, (http://food52.com/recipes...) I had to get creative to use it up. This salad is incredibly addictive and easy. It's perfect for the transition into fall. —thebunalsorises
Combine dates and red onions in a small bowl with cider vinegar. Let sit for twenty minutes while you prepare the rest of the salad.
Toss butternut squash with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet in one layer and roast in a 415-degree oven until soft and caramelized, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Heat a generous glug of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and thyme and cook until soft and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the challah and toss to coat with the oil. Add red pepper flakes. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees until bread cubes are crispy on the outside, but still soft on the inside, about 15 minutes. Toss occasionally to ensure even browning.
In a large bowl, combine challah with date and red onion mixture, squash, and hazelnuts. Squeeze on lemon juice and drizzle generously with olive oil. Toss and taste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide between plates and top with a large dollop of ricotta.