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Recipe Corner: Autumn Harvest Salad



As the leaves turn brilliant shades of red and gold and the air becomes crisp and invigorating, it's the perfect time to embrace the flavors of autumn with a delightful "Autumn Harvest Salad." This vibrant salad captures the essence of the season, combining a medley of fresh, wholesome ingredients that are both delicious and nutritious. Whether you're seeking a light lunch or a side dish for a cozy dinner, this salad is sure to satisfy your autumn cravings.


Ingredients:


For the Salad:

- 4 cups of mixed salad greens (such as spinach, arugula, and kale)

- 1 cup of butternut squash, cubed and roasted

- 1 cup of apples, thinly sliced (choose your favorite variety)

- 1/2 cup of dried cranberries

- 1/2 cup of pecans, toasted and roughly chopped

- 1/4 cup of red onion, thinly sliced

- 1/4 cup of crumbled goat cheese (optional, for added creaminess)


For the Dressing:

- 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil

- 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar

- 1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup

- 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard

- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Directions:


1. Prepare the Roasted Butternut Squash:

- Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).

- Peel and cube the butternut squash.

- Toss the cubed squash with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper.

- Spread the squash on a baking sheet and roast for about 25-30 minutes or until tender and slightly caramelized. Let it cool.


2. Prepare the Dressing:

- In a small bowl, whisk together the extra-virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, and Dijon mustard until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


3. Assemble the Salad:

- In a large salad bowl, combine the mixed greens, roasted butternut squash, sliced apples, dried cranberries, chopped pecans, and red onion.

- If desired, sprinkle crumbled goat cheese on top for an extra layer of flavor.


4. Drizzle with Dressing:

- Just before serving, drizzle the prepared dressing over the salad. Toss gently to ensure all ingredients are coated evenly.


5. Serve and Enjoy:

- Divide the salad into individual plates or bowls.

- Garnish with additional pecans or dried cranberries, if desired.

- Serve your Autumn Harvest Salad as a light meal or alongside your favorite fall-inspired dishes.


This Autumn Harvest Salad is not only a feast for the eyes but also a celebration of seasonal ingredients that nourish the body and delight the palate. With its vibrant colors and harmonious flavors, it's a perfect addition to your autumn menu. Enjoy the crisp, refreshing taste of fall with each bite!


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