Sometimes simple ingredients come together to make the perfect dish. With only four ingredients, this side dish is easy to make yet so tasty. I don’t normally add much salt to my vegetables, but the saltiness of the cheese really put this squash on another level. It tastes as sweet as always but with perfect contrast. I could eat this for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The only trick to know here is that the squash can’t be crowded in the pan, or it won’t brown; it will steam. It may seem like an unnecessary effort to use two pans, but it caramelizes the squash so it tastes like something you’d get at a restaurant.
- 1 large butternut squash
- 1 tsp olive oil
- sea salt
- 2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with foil and coat with olive oil spray.
- Use a knife or a vegetable peeler to remove the skin from the butternut squash. Cut it in half and remove the seeds; then cut into small pieces.
- Put half of the squash on each baking sheet, being sure to leave lots of room for the pieces to brown. Drizzle a half-teaspoon of oil over each baking sheet, and use your hands to mix the oil into the squash. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
- Bake for 25 minutes at 425 degrees. Remove the pans from the oven, stir the squash, and return the pans to the oven, but switch the pans—the pan that was on the top rack should now be on the bottom rack.
- Turn the oven down to 400 degrees and bake the squash for 15 minutes more.
- Remove squash from the oven and sprinkle each pan with parmesan cheese. Stir and serve.
Serves 4. Active time 15 minutes; total time 55 minutes. Adapted from http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/11/roasted-butternut-squash-with-pine-nuts-and-parmesan/
This is my new favorite salad. Baby bok choy is a delightful vegetable: crunchy and slightly bitter, with both greens and a cabbage-like stalk. I’ve been using it instead of onion in some recipes, but now that I know how good it is raw, I’ll be experimenting with other flavors of dressing.
Baby bok choy is more perishable than cabbage, so I don’t recommend dressing this salad and leaving it in the fridge overnight. It will keep for a few hours, though, so it’s a good option for a party appetizer or potluck; just make a double batch. Add the dressing right before you serve it, and it will stay crunchy for several hours. If you want to save some for the next day, don’t add any dressing until then.
- 1 1/2 tsp honey, put in the microwave for 5 seconds
- 1 1/2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce (gluten-free if desired)
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp grated ginger
- large pinch of onion powder
- 5 heads baby bok choy, rinsed, dried, and thinly sliced
- 1 large carrot, shredded
- 2 tbsp toasted sliced almonds
- 1 tbsp cilantro leaves
- In a small bowl, stir the honey, soy sauce, vinegar, oils, ginger, and onion powder until it forms a uniform dressing. Microwave for a few seconds if the honey isn’t combining easily.
- Pour the vinaigrette over the bok choy and carrot. Add the cilantro and toss well to coat the salad in dressing. Top with the toasted almonds and serve.
Serves 4 as an appetizer or 2 as a main course. Active and total time 15 minutes. Adapted from http://thecozyapron.com/cozy-cameo-pass-the-bok-choy-greens-and-my-skinny-jeans-please/
With its prohibition of citrus and strict limits on vinegar and oil, the low-acid diet does not make it easy to eat salad. Most of the salads I make use quinoa as a base instead of lettuce. To dress a green salad lightly and still enjoy it, you need to add something that keeps the palate interested.
Two textures made this salad a success: kale chips and ginger. The baked kale adds a salty, bitter crunch, while the grated ginger makes the dressing both thick and spicy. If you don’t feel like making kale chips, I suggest using toasted almonds as an alternative (but less interesting) crunchy topper.
Kale chips are easy to make. This was my first time trying it because in the past I’ve been too lazy to go through the effort of drying the kale. These leaves weren’t totally dry, so some of the chips stayed green instead of turning brown. I was happy to discover that the green chips were just as crunchy as the browned ones.
- 4 to 5 cups packed kale leaves
- olive oil spray
- sea salt
- 2 cups baby spinach/arugula mix
- 1/2 cup chopped snow peas or snap peas
- 1/2 cup chopped red pepper
- handful of cilantro leaves
- 1/2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce (gluten-free if desired)
- 1/2 tsp rice vinegar
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp honey
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
- pinch of onion powder
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the kale from the stems and tear it into bite-sized pieces. Wash and dry well in a salad spinner. Then dry the leaves completely on a towel.
- Arrange the kale in a single layer on 2 large baking sheets, and coat with olive oil spray. Sprinkle with sea salt to taste and cook for 10 to 14 minutes. Remove from the oven when some of the pieces are very brown, even if some of the other pieces are still green.
- While the kale is baking, add greens, peas, pepper, and cilantro to a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce, vinegar, oil, honey, ginger, and onion powder. Stir well.
- Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss well to coat. Arrange the salad on a large plate.
- When the kale chips are done, sprinkle a few on top of the salad and serve.
- Store extra kale chips at room temperature.
Serves 1. Active time 15 minutes; total time 20 minutes.