What are your favourite things about fall? For me, it's going for a run and stepping on a pile of maple leaves. I enjoy making chai tea with soy and reading more, because for some reason, this is the season when curling up with a book is the best. When it comes to cooking, what I love the most about fall is using squash any way I can. Today, acorn squash made it's way into this autumn salad.
Salads play a huge role in our home. I was a vegetarian for many years, until one day while pregnant with Isabella, I was watching "Mad About You" where Helen Hunt had a craving for mussels. Well, suddenly I had one too. Those mussels where in front of me 20 minutes later, and since that day fish and seafood have been a must in my life.
Today's dish mixes different flavours, including savoury and sweet. What's great about making a salad is treating the plate like a canvas and incorporating various flavours and textures. That's how this recipe happened. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
1 acorn squash
1 barlett pear
1/2 cup cooked farro
1 ball mozzarella
2 tbps maple syrup
1 tbsp olive oil (or coconut oil)
pinch of sea salt
pinch of pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 clove of garlic
1/2 cup basil leaves
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili flakes
Start by making the basil oil. Finely chop the basil, squeeze the lemon and add it to a small bowl with the rest of the ingredients and set aside.
Bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil, and add the farro. Bring to a simmer and cook until tender (about 30 minutes). Strain, discard the water and set farro aside.
While the farro cooks, preheat your oven to 375. Cut the acorn squash in rounds and remove the seeds. Place the squash in a medium size bowl and add the maple syrup, oil, salt and pepper. Coat well and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, turning once.
Cut the pear in thin slices, remove the pomegranate seeds, and tear the mozzarella in small pieces.
Once the farro and squash have cooled slightly, place the squash on a plate, sprinkle with farro and pomegranate seeds, add the pear slices and mozzarella and top with basil oil.
Note: the farro can be cooked the day before.