Warm Roasted Pumpkin + Apple Salad With Goats Feta, Walnuts and Apple Balsamic
This is a beautiful marriage of seasonal flavours that evokes a hint of sweetness and spice. Rounds of pumpkin are roasted with olive oil and a touch of cinnamon which intensifies the delicious flavour. I’ve also sliced red apple into generous rounds and pan roasted them until golden – the secret is to also squeeze over a little orange juice just before removing the pan off the heat which takes the flavour to another level and add extra freshness and aroma. I love this salad warm, but you can also take leftovers to work and enjoy cold for lunch. I’ve used baby spinach as a base to this salad, but feel free to use other leafy greens such as rocket, massaged kale and micro herbs.
What’s great about it:
Pumpkin is a great source of carotenoid antioxidants that are anti-inflammatory and help to support a healthy immune system. Pumpkin is also low GI, a good source of fibre that will fill you up without blowing you out. The potassium content of pumpkin is awesome ! Potassium helps restore the body’s balance of electrolytes and supports heart and muscle function. Cinnamon helps stabilise blood sugar levels as well as helps to boost brain function. Apples are high in fibre (around 5 g each) they contain both soluble and insoluble fibre which is great for your digestive system. The soluble fibre is known as pectin and the beauty of it is that it has the power to help lower cholesterol, keep you regular and stabilise blood sugar. Walnuts are a delicious source of omega 3 EFA’s (essential fatty acids) which are critical for good health.
1 Butternut pumpkin, peeled and cut into rounds
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 red apples, cut into rounds with the skin and core included
2 oranges – zest and juice
2 handfuls walnuts, lightly roasted
300 g (10 1/2 oz) goats feta or chèvre
100 g (3 1/2 oz) baby spinach leaves or mixed greens
bunch chopped parsley
4 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons apple juice concentrate
Preheat oven to 200 C.
Combine pumpkin with the little olive oil and lay onto 2 baking trays lined with baking paper.
Season pumpkin with sea salt and a little ground cinnamon.
Roast for 30 minutes or until pumpkin is tender and golden.
Heat a large heavy based pan over a medium heat and sauté the apple slices with a little olive oil until golden on both sides.
Squeeze in orange juice and add a little zest over the apple and give the pan a good swirl – then remove from the heat and set aside.
Place leafy greens onto the base of a serving platter or individual serving plates.
Arrange the warm pumpkin, layering with the apple over the leafy greens.
Garnish with roasted walnuts, goats feta or chèvre and parsley.
Drizzle over a little combined apple balsamic before serving and enjoy.
Add a scattering of chickpeas before serving.
Garnish with jewels of pomegranate before serving.
Add a sprinkle of goji berry or chia before serving.
Use pumpkin seeds in place of walnuts.