Recipe: Acorn Squash and Escarole Salad

Acorn Squash and Escarole Salad by Justin Chapple and Laura Rege.

Photo by Con Poulos; Food styling by Simon Andrews

This lovely knife-and-fork salad from Food & Wine magazine gets fantastic texture from crunchy hazelnuts and pomegranate seeds, and the creamy buttermilk drizzle does the perfect job of tying all the components together.

     
Acorn Squash and Escarole Salad
Active: 30 mins.; Total: 1 hr 15 mins.
Serves 10 

Ingredients:
1 cup raw hazelnuts
1½ lbs. acorn squash—quartered lengthwise, seeded and cut crosswise into ¼-inch wedges (9 oz.)
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. coriander seeds, crushed
Kosher salt and pepper
¾ cup buttermilk
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 garlic clove, finely grated
1 lb. escarole, white and light green parts only, leaves torn
1 lb. arugula (not baby), stemmed and leaves torn
1 cup pomegranate seeds

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Spread the hazelnuts on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until fragrant and lightly browned. Transfer the hazelnuts to a kitchen towel and rub together in the towel to release the skins. Let the hazelnuts cool, then coarsely chop. Leave the oven on.

2. On the large rimmed baking sheet, toss the squash with the olive oil and coriander and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, turning once, until tender and browned in spots. Let cool.

3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the buttermilk with the mayonnaise, garlic and 2 teaspoons of pepper. Season generously with salt.

4. On a large platter, toss half of the escarole with half of the arugula. Scatter half each of the squash, hazelnuts and pomegranate seeds on top. Repeat the layering one more time. Serve, passing the buttermilk drizzle at the table.

MAKE AHEAD:

The buttermilk drizzle can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. The layered salad can be covered with damp paper towels and refrigerated for up to 3 hours.

      
From "The Ultimate Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Menu" courtesy of Food & Wine Magazine. All rights reserved.

      
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