Serves 4-6 (as a starter)
1 small butternut squash
several figs, quartered
a couple of tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
salt + pepper
the juice of ½ a lemon
a bunch of kale (about 4 cups), center ribs removed and chopped
1/2 cup of really good balsamic vinegar
a shallot, thinly sliced (preferably with a mandolin)
hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds
Roast the butternut squash:
•Pre-heat the oven to 400º.
•Peel the butternut squash and slice it into cubes. Lightly drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
•Cook for 30-40 minutes until the squash is tender.
•Remove from the oven, and set aside.
While the squash is roasting, prepare kale and figs, and make the balsamic reduction:
Place the chopped kale in a bowl, squeeze the lemon over the kale, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and massage the kale using your hands. Set aside until you’re ready to serve.
Place a medium sized frying pan over medium heat and place a little bit of olive oil in the pan. Sear the figs for a couple of minutes on each side until they begin to caramelize, remove and set aside. Then, in the same pan, add the balsamic vinegar and reduce to half. It should thicken up and look like a syrup.
Remove from the heat and set aside while you assemble the salad.
Assemble the salad:
Place the figs, squash, and shallots on top of the marinated kale. Drizzle the balsamic reduction over top, and finish with the hemp and pumpkin seeds. Give it a little toss and serve.