As you likely already know, last month Mark Bittman retired his long-lived opinion column in the New York Times. And yesterday evening in Bittman's honor I made a new version of his recipe for Roasted Squash with Kale and Vinaigrette. His is one of those no-measure recipes that is quite straightforward and lets you determine the amounts yourself, which is all the rage these days.
Bittman's recipe includes kale, and blending a vinaigrette with shallots. He also calls for roasting squash halves before cutting the flesh into cubes. Mine doesn't, I didn't, and I don't. But the essence is the same. I cubed my squash before roasting, didn't blend my dressing, and omitted the kale in the recipe, though I did serve a side dish of kale along with the squash. And my recipe does list measurements, for those of you who panic at the thought of kitchen improvisation (too much pressure!)...
I love the way the sweet squash is balanced by the tangy red wine vinegar. And I savor bites that have some good shallot chunks in there! And I revel in how quick and easy it is. Plus, it looks beautiful in my green bowls!
Thanks for the inspiration, as always, Mr. Bittman. Your column will be missed. But your recipes will live on. Can't wait to see what you do next.
ROAST BUTTERNUT SQUASH WITH SHALLOT VINAIGRETTE
- 2 lbs butternut squash
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for squash
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- Sea salt (Maldon, or any large flaked salt)
- Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and position a rack in the middle. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Peel and deseed the squash, and cut into 1" cubes (roughly). Toss with a splash of extra virgin olive oil, and spread on the prepared baking sheet. Grind some pepper over the top, and sprinkle with crushed sea salt.
Place the squash in the oven, and roast for about 30 minutes, or until the squash is fork tender and beginning to caramelize slightly.
Combine the shallot, 1/4 cup olive oil, red wine vinegar, a good pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper in a jar. Shake vigorously to combine.
Remove the squash from the oven, and divide between bowls. Drizzle the dressing over the top.