Roasted Pumpkin Salad with walnuts

 

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A fresh and crunchy salad doesn’t always have to be on the side, it can be the star of its own meal. In this hot summer if you don’t feel like cooking and sweating yourself too much in the kitchen, you can try making this simple yet yummy salad. Roasted pumpkin, baby spinach leaves and toasted walnuts are drizzled with a sweet balsamic and honey dressing.

Ingredients:

1.2 kg pumpkin (we use butternut) 
1 tbsp olive oil  
salt and pepper, to taste 
2 medium garlic cloves, unpeeled     
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar   
2 tbsp olive oil  
1 tbsp honey
 
100g baby spinach leaves ( get ready to eat pack from supermarket)

1/2 cup of toasted walnuts pieces  (I bought Lucky brand crumbed walnuts)
3 rashers of bacon, chopped
 

Directions:
1) Preheat oven to 220C. Move the oven rack to the middle shelf position.

2) Cut pumpkin into slices about 2cm thick and 4cm by 4cm, and remove skin and seeds. Place the pumpkin pieces on the oven tray on a single layer and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

3) Cut a small amount off the end of each garlic clove  (helps prevent from bursting out of its skin when roasting) and put garlic on the tray with the pumpkin. Bake garlic and pumpkin for 20 mins then take the tray out leaving garlic aside. Turn the pumpkin pieces over and return to oven for further 15 – 25 mins until lightly browned and tender when push with a knife. Leave aside to cool until room temperature.

4) To make the dressing – until the garlic is completely cool and easy to handle with hand. squeeze garlic from the skin into a small bowl. Mash the garlic with a fork. Add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar and honey then mix well with a spoon. (taste test and add more of vinegar or honey depends on preference)

5) To toasted walnut, place the walnut on a small pan without adding any oil. Turn the heat on low and agitated the pan every now and then for about 5 mins until you can smell some nutty aroma.

6) To make crispy bacon – Change the oven temperature to 200C, place the bacon on the baking tray line with baking paper. Bake in the oven for 8 mins on one side, then take the baking tray out and turn the bacon over for further 8 mins. Line a few paper towels on a clean plate and place the bacon on top to absorb excessive oil and leave aside to cool completely. Cut into pieces when it is completely cool and it should be crispy at this point.

7) Arrange spinach leaves, pumpkin and bacon on  serving plate, drizzle the dressing and nuts all over and serve immediately.

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Place the pumpkin pieces on the oven tray on a single layer and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

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make sure the pan is dry and do not add any oil when toasting the nuts

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infusing garlic into the salad dressing

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super easy but yummy salad dressing – balsamic vinegar, honey and olive oil

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20 mins later…

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Crispy bacon time, make sure you watch the oven closely as it is easy to burnt, and warn you even when the bacon doesn’t look crispy, it will be when it is completely cool down

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Woo hoo

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. eatmarvin
    Jan 30, 2011 @ 17:05:55

    Hi Wendy! Great Recipe! I love the way you made the dressing. Nothing like fresh baked garlic. 🙂

    Reply

  2. lateraleating
    Jan 30, 2011 @ 21:43:03

    Sounds like a great salad, will try it out soon!

    Reply

  3. angie
    Jan 31, 2011 @ 07:55:48

    I do love roast pumpkin and I find that it always goes nicely in a salad, especially with baby spinach. I eat so much of it that I get sick of it though.

    Reply

  4. foodie and the chef
    Feb 02, 2011 @ 12:32:07

    This looks super – there’s nothing like salty bacon and sweet pumpkin. 🙂

    Reply

  5. Ptinutz
    Feb 03, 2011 @ 02:17:59

    Yeah a blog about food and restaurant and from Australia, so great. This salad seems delicious, I think I will do it soon.

    Reply

  6. Julie
    Feb 09, 2011 @ 10:02:33

    wee bacon in salad = win! looks quite filling too 🙂 yummos

    Reply

  7. dinewithleny
    Feb 11, 2011 @ 09:12:19

    Looks so delicious wendy. Healthy too.

    Reply

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