Like Chicken Ballotine, this Delicata Squash Salad recipe is another Keith discovery. In fact, he made both for me on the same night. Yes, I am a VERY lucky girl.
The second time we had it, we decided to riff on the original recipe by Melissa Clark (one of our favorite recipe resources), swapping in maple syrup for honey, plain yogurt for buttermilk, walnuts for pecans and smoked paprika for chili powder. Both ways were delicious, but I’ll have to give the nod to maple syrup over honey.
What is Delicata Squash?
If you’re new to delicata squash, this is a great way to introduce yourself. It’s absolutely my favorite winter squash. In fact, most of the time, we roast it and eat it plain; it’s so sweet it needs nothing: no salt, no sugar, no butter – nada. However, it dresses up beautifully. (It’s excellent in this medley of Roasted Fall Vegetables and in this Delicata Squash Soup.)
Roasting it with maple syrup, smoky paprika and salt gives it incredible depth and complexity. Then tossing it with peppery arugula, bitter-crisp radicchio, buttery toasted walnuts and creamy, tarragon-kissed dressing, well…no need to imagine, try it instead!
Roasted delicata squash, the skin is not only edible, it’s richly flavorful. For soup , steaming, and stir fry recipes, you may prefer to peel the squash.
Though delicata squash and acorn squash are both cultivated from the Cucurbita pepo species, they are not the same. Other names for delicata squash are sweet potato squash, Bohemian squash and peanut squash.
Delicata squash is excellent to eat on it’s own, but also works beautifully for soups, salads, and more.
What to Serve Alongside
Delicata Squash Salad with Creamy Tarragon Dressing
- 2 medium delicata squashes
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt divided
- ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil divided
- 1/3 cup plain full-fat yogurt
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped tarragon
- 1 small clove garlic minced
- 1 small head radicchio cored and thinly sliced
- 5 ounces arugula
- 1/3 cup toasted walnuts chopped
- 2 green onions thinly sliced crosswise
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut one delicata squash in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and slice into 1/2-inch half-moons. Repeat with remaining squash.
- In a large bowl, whisk together maple syrup, 3/4 teaspoon salt, smoked paprika and 2 tablespoons olive oil, add squash slices and toss to coat evenly. Transfer to prepared baking sheet, spreading into a nearly single layer. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes. (Don't roast so long that the squash lose their shape.)
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, tarragon, remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt and garlic. In a steady stream, whisk in remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil; whisk until emulsified.
- In a large bowl, combine radicchio, arugula, squash, walnuts and green onions. Pour in dressing and toss to coat; season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve.