If you’re thinking, “hmm, that picture looks familiar…” you’re right. I admit it right up front- this is a picture of a lentil salad I created this past September. That was back when we still had natural light streaming through our window at 4:00pm- a decent and completely respectable time to be making dinner! But come mid-November, at 4pm it’s basically already dark out and all my pictures end up looking shadowy and grainy. Since this salad has a lot of the same ingredients and honestly looks the same as this one did, I had to use it.
I love the flavors and colors of fall and how easy it is to eat healthily but satisfyingly. For this salad, I tweaked my original recipe by using butternut squash in place of sweet potato, garbanzo beans instead of white beans, and a bit more curry powder. Plus, REAL BEETS! Not that canned beets aren’t real… but I had never actually roasted my own beets. This was a major life event, ya’ll. I’ve heard they’re really easy to make and that the skin will rub right off after roasting in tin foil for about 45 min… and while this was sort of true, I found I really had to rub (or use the peeler) to get the skins off. Maybe I should’ve let them cool more? Will have to keep experimenting. But at least I can say I am no longer a raw beet virgin. Good times.
- 1 cup lentils
- 1 butternut squash, cubed (you can find cubed squash at the store pre-cut! makes it so much easier!)
- 1 lemon, halved
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1½ tbsp curry powder, divided
- 2 tsp cumin
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 5-6 small beets
- Broccoli and cauliflower florets, chopped roughly (about 2 cups)
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- ½ red onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 bunch Italian parsley, chopped roughly
- feta and spinach, for serving (optional)
- Heat oven to 425 deg. Wrap beets loosely in foil and bake for 45
- minutes until tender. Meanwhile, cook lentils according to package directions.
- Pat garbanzo beans with a paper towel until dry and combine with butternut squash cubes, minced garlic, garlic powder, 1 tbsp curry powder, and 1 tsp cumin. Drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix to combine. Bake on a large cookie sheet for 45 minutes (at the same time as the beets).
- When beets until cool to touch, rub skins off with a paper towel and slice into chunks.
- Remove squash and garbanzos from the cookie sheet and set aside. Using the same cookie sheet, add broccoli, cauliflower and mushrooms and spray with cooking spray. Reduce heat to 375 and bake for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add parsley, red onion, juice of 1/2 of the lemon, and half of the garbanzos to a food processor and pulse only a few times until chopped roughly. Add to a large bowl with squash, remaining garbanzos, lentils, beets, and roasted veggies. Toss to combine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together remaining curry powder, cumin, 2 tbsp olive oil, other 1/2 lemon juice, dijon mustard, and salt and pepper. Let tomatoes marinate in the dressing for 10 minutes before pouring entire mixture over the rest of the salad. Toss to combine.
Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, make sure to eat with your eyes this holiday season! Chances are you’ll find your food tastier and healthier!
And if I don’t get a chance to say this before next week, Happy Thanksgiving! I am so thankful for so many things in my life, including my husband, my pup, countless professional opportunities, and my loyal readers!