Recipe of the Week: Kale & Butternut Squash Salad with Tahini Dressing

IMG_1585

For the Salad
1 bunch of kale
2 cups large diced butternut squash
1 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon curry powder
Pinch or two of sea salt
½ cup candied pecans

For the Dressing
2 tablespoons tahini
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1-2 teaspoon maple syrup
½ teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Add the diced butternut squash and rinsed chickpeas to a baking sheet lined with parchment. Drizzle with the extra virgin olive oil and curry powder. Mix with your hands until the squash and chickpeas are well coated. Sprinkle with salt and bake for 15-20 minutes or until squash is tender and chickpeas are lightly browned. Remove from oven and let cool.
You will need to blanch the kale to soften the leaves and take out some of the bitterness (alternatively, you can massage the leaves by hand with a tsp of oil once they are trimmed and cut).
Fill a stock pot about halfway with water and heat, covered until boiling. While water is coming to a boil, prepare an ice bath in a large bowl. Fill it halfway with cold water and add about a dozen ice cubes.
To prepare the kale, strip the leaves from the thick stems by using your thumb and forefinger to peel from thickest end of stem. Chop leaves into bite size pieces. Blanch in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Remove with tongs or slotted spoon and immediately transfer to ice bath. Drain and shake off excess water. Transfer to a large serving bowl.
Add the butternut squash and chickpeas to the bowl of kale. Add the candied pecans and drizzle with the tahini dressing. Toss to coat. Allow to rest for about 10 minutes to let the flavors meld.