My original idea was to put a Fall spin on a Summer classic: The Caprese Salad. There's nothing more refreshing than a juicy tomato topped with a cool slice of mozzarella and a fresh piece of basil. Unfortunately, in the Fall, it’s pretty impossible to find good tomatoes. This Fall, I thought it would be fun to break the caprese salad rules, and make a version with Squash instead of tomato, and a pumpkin seed pesto instead of the traditional pine nut version. Also, I’ve elevated this salad with a delicious burrata cheese, instead of mozzarella. So now, it is really nothing like a caprese salad, except that it is oh-so-delicious and satisfying to your tastebuds and tummy. Hope you enjoy!
For the Squash
1 acorn squash
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp salt
1 container burrata cheese (or fresh mozzarella if this is not available).
Preheat the oven to 425 F. Carefully cut the squash into 4-5 large discs and remove the seeds. Note: this is more for presentation purposes, you can cut the squash in fourths whichever way is easiest for you.
Place the squash pieces on a lined baking sheet. Brush with olive oil and maple syrup, and then top with cinnamon and salt.
Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until squash is slightly browned.
Meanwhile, make the pesto.
Pumpkin Seed Pesto
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup basil
1 tsp salt
⅓ cup olive oil
On a non-stick pan over medium heat, place pumpkin seeds. Gently toss until toasted (do not spray this pan), and then transfer the blender or food processor. Add in basil, salt, and olive oil and pulse until blended.
On a plate spread a generous amount of pesto. Top with squash, and burrata and enjoy. To add a little extra boost to this meal add an additional protein, such as salmon, steak, or chicken.
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