Key Ingredient

Roasted Acorn Squash Salad

By: Hannah Lee Leidy
Photo by Jack Sororkin

Food Culture of the South

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Serves 4

    For the squash:
  • 2 acorn squash
  • quartered and seeded
  • ¼ cup blended olive oil (Dissen prefers a 75/25 blend of canola and
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • For the yogurt:
  • 2 cups whole-milk yogurt
  • ¼ cup pureed preserved lemon
  • For the chorizo:
  • 2 cups chopped fresh chorizo sausage
  • For the vinaigrette:
  • ¼ cup white wine vinegar
  • 1½ teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1½ teaspoons minced shallot
  • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1½ teaspoons honey
  • ¾ cup blended oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon each chopped basil
  • parsley
  • and thyme
  • For the garnish:
  • 2 fennel bulbs
  • shaved, with fronds reserved
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced basil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped thyme
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced chives
  • ½ cup pine nuts
  • toasted
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Make the squash: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss squash in oil and season with salt and pepper. Place squash on a sheet tray and roast until tender and beginning to brown, about 40 minutes. Remove from oven and reserve at room temperature.
  2. Make the yogurt: In a blender, puree yogurt and preserved lemon until incorporated. Season to taste. Make sure to not blend too long as it will overheat the yogurt.
  3. Make the chorizo: In a sauté pan, cook chorizo over medium heat until rendered and beginning to brown. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon and drain on a sheet tray lined with paper towels. Set aside.
  4. Make the vinaigrette: In a blender, combine vinegar, mustard, shallots, garlic, and honey. Puree until smooth. While blender is running, slowly pour in oil to emulsify the vinaigrette. Season to taste and fold in herbs.
  5. To assemble: On a large plate, smear preserved lemon yogurt and top with two wedges of squash. In a medium bowl, toss together fennel, basil, thyme, chives, and pine nuts with the herb vinaigrette. Season to taste. Place fennel salad on top of the acorn squash and sprinkle with crumbled chorizo. Finish with more pine nuts and fennel fronds. Serve immediately.


From A Tale of Two Cooks.

  • From William Dissen, The Market Place, Asheville, North Carolina

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