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Roast butternut with lentils and special sauce

 

Roast butternut with lentils and special sauce  name

This recipe comes from Hettie Mackinnon who started out delivering handmade salads to Melbourne locals on the back of her bike and soon became something of a Sydney food legend! I made this salad for dinner the other evening and had it with some leftover cold lamb and then I had it again for lunch the next day. It is so full of flavour but also very versatile in that you can swap out the main components for what you have on hand. If you don’t have butternut, you could use carrots or parsnips and lentils can be swapped for chickpeas or molgrabhi. I also swapped the Swiss cheese for Harvati, but Gruyere would also be a good substitute.

 

Serves 4

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1.25cm (½ inch) slices (or use carrots, parsnip or kumara)

Extra virgin olive oil

½ cup lentils (black or green), rinsed

10 green olives, pits removed

10 wrinkly black olives, pits removed

2 cups baby rocket (arugula) leaves

Sea salt and black pepper

 

Quick pickled shallots

1 small French shallot, very finely sliced

1 tbsp red wine vinegar

1 tbsp sugar

 

Special sauce

½ cup whole egg mayonnaise

1 small clove garlic, minced

1 tsp capers, rinsed and roughly chopped

1 tbsp grated pecorino or parmesan

1 tbsp grated swiss cheese

50g fresh mozzarella, finely diced

Juice of ¼ lemon

Sea salt and black pepper

 

Preheat oven to 190˚C / 375˚F. For the quick pickled shallots, place the shallot slices in a small non-metal bowl, add the vinegar, sugar and about 1 tablespoon of water. Stir and leave to pickle while you prepare the rest of your salad. Place the butternut squash on a large baking tray and drizzle over the olive oil. Toss to coat well and then arrange the slices in a single layer on the tray. Roast for 25-30 minutes, until the squash is tender and golden. Remove from the oven and season with sea salt and black pepper. Set aside to cool. Meanwhile, place the lentils in a medium saucepan, cover with cold water and add 2 pinches of salt. Cook for 20-25 minutes until the lentils are tender. Drain and set aside to cool. Or if using canned lentils or chickpeas rinse under cold water, drain and set aside. Prepare the sauce by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl. Place the squash in a large mixing bowl, along with the lentils, olives and a few of the pickled shallots. Add about half the sauce and toss gently to combine. To serve, place ¾ of the rocket on a plate, top with the squash mixture. Dollop the rest of the sauce on top and scatter over a few more pickled shallots.

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