Butternut Squash salad

Caramelising butternut squash with honey and then adding toasted sunflower seeds is a perfect mixture of textures

Nutty butternut squash salad 

The giant corn really makes this salad, giving it crunch and texture. We saw the corn in the supermarket and wondered what it would taste like – sensational.

Serves 8

2 large butternut squash
2 tbsp runny honey
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 tbsp sunflower seeds
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds (or the seeds from your squash)
25g pecan nuts
25g unsalted peanuts

​100g baby spinach
2 tbsp roasted salted giant corn
small bunch of chives, roughly snipped
salt and black pepper

Dressing

65ml sunflower oil
20ml Safari brown vinegar (or other brown vinegar)
1 tbsp sugar
½ tsp black pepper
½ tsp garlic salt
¼ tsp table salt
4 tbsp mayonnaise
4 tbsp plain yoghurt
2 tsp peanut butter

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6. Peel the squash and cut them into wedges. Put the wedges in a big bowl and toss them with a tablespoon of the honey and the sunflower oil, then season with salt and pepper. Tip the wedges on to a baking tray and bake them for 45 minutes until soft and slightly caramelised. Leave them to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, toast the seeds and nuts in a dry frying pan for a couple of minutes. When they begin to colour, add the remaining tablespoon of honey and a good pinch of salt. Let the nuts and seeds caramelise for 30 seconds, then take the pan off the heat and leave the nuts and seeds to cool. Mix all the dressing ingredients together in a jug. Roughly chop the seeds and nuts, leaving the smaller ones whole. Spread the spinach on a serving dish, top with the squash, then scatter the nuts, seeds and giant corn on top. Drizzle the thick creamy dressing over the salad and scatter it with chives. 

The Social Kitchen: Food for family and friends, by Dani Tucker, £25. Visit thesocialkitchen.org for more recipes

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