When I was at the grocery store last week I picked up a new squash to try. I love trying out new foods, so I was excited to come across this unfamiliar guy:
I looked it up when I got home and found out that it’s a sweet dumpling squash. That’s a fitting name for it because it was definitely sweet, with a bit of a nutty flavour too. I decided to use it in this really simple but delicious squash and arugula salad. It made a perfect healthy dinner alongside some balsamic grilled chicken and crusty bread!
- 1 sweet dumpling squash, cut into wedges
- 5-6 cups of arugula
- ¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
- ⅓ cup shaved Gouda cheese
- 5 small chopped dates
- 1.5 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ cup aged balsamic vinegar
- ½ tsp honey
- Brush the wedges of squash with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, and roast at 400°F for about 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- Assemble the salad with the squash, arugula, pumpkin seeds, cheese and dates.
- Then whisk together the dressing of olive oil, vinegar and honey and drizzle it on top.
If you’re not a winter squash fan yet, you should be! Winter squash like sweet dumpling, butternut, and acorn squash are a power house of nutrition! All varieties are great sources of fibre, potassium, vitamin C, and beta carotene. Beta carotene is an antioxidant that can be converted to vitamin A in the body.
I’ve heard some confusion about this though, so I just wanted to clear things up. High doses of vitamin A are toxic, however eating a lot of beta carotene will NOT cause vitamin A toxicity. This is because the conversion only occurs if your body is low in vitamin A. The only notable side effect of eating a lot of beta carotene is development of a yellow-orange skin tone, especially in the fatty parts of your hands and feet.
I definitely think I’ve noticed this in my hands thanks to my love for squash, pumpkin and sweet potatoes! I try to limit how much I eat though – I wouldn’t want to have to rename this blog “Oompa Loompa’s Healthy Kitchen”!
What is your favourite winter squash?
Have you tried any new fruits or vegetables lately?