It’s winter baking time! Tis the season for squash! My favorite combination is acorn squash and maple syrup; the play off one another beautifully. To add texture and take advantage of another in-season produce, I added pomegranate seeds. These little ruby jewels contrast so beautifully with the deep green of the kale, and seem quite seasonally appropriate.
Goat cheese marries beautifully with maple syrup and sweet squash, adding creaminess and tang. The nuts add a final, pleasing crunch. This meal is as pleasing to look at as it is to eat, and it requires very little time investment on the part of the cook. You have about 20 minutes of active work and a meal on your plate in about an hour.
I hope you’ll try this soon!
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
salt and pepper, to taste
pinch red pepper flakes
2 acorn squash
2 cups kale, torn into 1 inch pieces
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
1/4 cup chopped almonds
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Meanwhile, combine the maple syrup, butter, dijon mustard, pomegranate molasses, apple cider vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook while stirring for about three minutes, until thickened slightly.
Cut each squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Slice each half into four wedges. Place in a bowl with the maple syrup mixture and toss to coat.
Arrange the squash on a baking sheet, receiving the excess maple syrup mixture left in the bowl. Bake for 20 minutes. Brush the squash with the remaining maple syrup mixture and bake a further 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, toss the kale in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Lay out in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake in the oven until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes.
To serve, transfer the squash and kale to a platter and sprinkle evenly with goat cheese, pomegranate seeds and almonds.
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