So here’s a thing we all know to be true: Wednesdays are hard.
If you’re anything like me, it means that you’ve spent the day accidentally walking into doors, dropping plates of food, and thinking: Is it Friday? I think it might be Friday! The week is finally over! Thank heavens! –Oh, no, wait, it’s only Wednesday. Not the best.
So how do you cure the Wednesday blues?
Step one: invite an old friend you haven’t seen for ages over for dinner.
Step two: drink like it’s Friday.
Step three: crack open that vegetable drawer.
Step four: you really don’t need to wash the dishes until tomorrow.
Friends, do I ever have a dinner for you. It’s so tasty and colourful, you won’t even notice that it’s got no meat, gluten, or dairy. It involves a squash that you don’t even have to peel, so you can say goodbye to all your near-finger-loss-encounters with butternut. It’s warm and filling. It smells like fall. It’s got the caramelized sweetness of the squash, the crunch of the cauliflower, the earthiness of spinach, and the smokiness of the toasted nuts.
(As an added bonus, you can eat the leftovers for lunch at work the next day, which still may not be Friday, but life’s delicious so who cares?)
Roasted squash with purple cauliflower, quinoa, and toasted seeds
1 delicata squash
1 Tbs miso paste
1 tsp honey
1 Tbs Olive oil
1 c. quinoa
2 c. water
1 medium purple cauliflower, cut into florets
1/2 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs honey
2 tsps cider vinegar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp chili flakes
2 generous handfuls spinach, washed & chopped
1/4 c. toasted pepitas/sunflower seeds
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. Halve the squash lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, then chop into half-moons. Toss the squash with the miso, the teaspoon of honey, and the tablespoon of olive oil. Roast, stirring occasionally, for about thirty minutes, or until soft.
3. While the squash is roasting, rinse the quinoa really thoroughly in a sieve (don’t skip this step — otherwise it will have a bitter, metallic taste) and then cook in water at a low boil for 10-15 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, in a large pan, cook the onions in the two tablespoons of olive oil for about five minutes or until soft. Add the garlic, cook for another minute, and add the cinnamon, chili flakes, and salt.
5. Add the cauliflower, drizzle the honey and vinegar on top, and toss it all together. Cook on medium-high heat for about ten minutes.
6. At the last minute, toss the squash and spinach into the cauliflower pot until everything is mixed together and the spinach is wilted slightly.
7. Mix everything together with the quinoa, and serve topped with toasted seeds.
Serve with a ton of white wine. And a little dessert never hurt anyone.