Squash, blood, orange and radicchio salad. Another warm salad for me with no sign of quitting yet!
I always thought that Squash was primarily an autumn vegetable. It is, at least that is the time of year when it is harvested. Most squashes, if left whole, will keep for months, so are often harvested in autumn and then kept in vegetable storage sheds for for over the winter (which is why I am still receiving it in my veg bag). A clever way of keeping our kitchens with slightly more variety than potatoes and parsnips.
Radicchio, the purple leaf in the dish, is one of my latest favourite obsessions. I’m not sure why this has caught my attention so much, maybe its because its best when doused with delicious balsamic vinegar, or maybe simply because it has the most amazing colour. Radicchio, which is from the same greens family as endive, is a bitter vegetable, a flavour most of use aren’t drawn to.
I actually shot this radicchio salad recipe on a whim just before the end of 2016. I’d been at Borough Market earlier on that day (supposedly on my way home from a meeting / attempting to do some Christmas shopping), and was surprised to find a tray of Sicilian blood oranges for sale as I thought it a bit early. You don’t usually find blood oranges till at least January, so her they are not at their reddest, I hope you have luck finding more bloodier oranges.
Also in Borough I picked up a rather lovely block of Gorwydd Caerphilly Cheese (because Welsh is best!). Gorwydd is not actually made in Caerphilly any more, but is so far removed from the supermarket carefully (as we used to call it) that I grew up eating melted on toast. The cheese isn’t essential to this recipe, but the creamy mild flavour complements the sharp oranges and bitter leaves quite nicely.
Doing well with all my salads this month, that is until I teach a healthy desserts class at Made in Hackney this week. I am looking forward to tipping the other end of the moderation balance!
- 1 medium squash, scrubbed, and chopped into small cubes
- 1 tsp grainy mustard
- 1 small, or half a medium head radicchio, shredded
- a few leaves of cavolo nero, shredded
- 1 blood orange, supremed (catch the juice and reserve for dressing)
- Olive oil
- Balsamic vinegar
- Optional cheese to top - a creamy mild, cheese is best
- 1 Tbsp hazelnut oil
- 1 Tbsp blood orange juice
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- pinch sea salt
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Toss the squash with the oil, grainy mustard and ½ tsp salt, then roast on a baking tray in the oven for 25 minutes until fork tender, and browned
- Meanwhile prep the rest of your ingredients, and make up the dressing by whisking all of the ingredients together
- When the squash is ready, you can cook the radicchio. Heat a tbsp olive oil in a frying pan, and sauce the radicchio leaves with the cavolo nero, for a few minutes until wilted. Add a pinch of salt and a splash of balsamic vinegar, stir then take the leaves off the heat.
- Toss the warm squash with the salad leaves and plate up on individual plates or a serving plater. Add the blood orange segments, drizzle over the dressing (you may not need it all), and then add the cheese if you like