a farm tour + butternut squash risotto.

a farm tour + butternut squash risotto. | theclevercarrot.coma farm tour + butternut squash risotto. | theclevercarrot.coma farm tour + butternut squash risotto. | theclevercarrot.com

So, as it turns out: I’m not super woman after all.

It’s been a month since my last blog update, and the lack of posts have been nagging at my subconscious.

But I’m not the type to post random stuff for the sake of it. I work from inspiration so that I can pass it on to you. However, sometimes, ‘other things’ take over and it can be tricky to find a balance. I’ve been caught up in a whirlwind of life stuff, work, wrangling kids, and sadly still grieving the passing of someone very close to my heart.

In addition, I’ve been working on an exciting new project (more details soon!) that has pretty much consumed my thoughts and creativity.

But for now, I’ve come up for air.

Hi!

How are you all doing?!…

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warm autumn spinach salad

warm autumn spinach salad | theclevercarrot.com

On the rare occasion, as a kid, we went to TGI Friday’s for dinner as a treat.

My mom would order the warm spinach salad and I had a chicken quesadilla (exciting!).

To this day, I distinctly remember that salad being really strange. Why on on Earth would anyone want to eat a pile of spinach with raw mushrooms and warm dressing?!

Luckily, tastebuds evolve….

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warm squash salad with apricot and manchego

Warm Squash Salad with Apricot and Manchego | The Clever Carrot

I’m a big seasonal eater.

Now that it’s fall, one might think it’s time to gorge yourself on pumpkin muffins and gingerbread lattes (although that does sound tempting…) But for me, seasonal eating means to save your berries for summer and eat your root veggies now! Eating this ways is one of the best things you can do. Not only is it good for the environment, but your health (and wallet) will benefit too.

Warm Squash Salad with Apricot and Manchego | The Clever CarrotWarm Squash Salad with Apricot and Manchego | The Clever Carrot

So let’s talk squash salad.

My lovely farm share sent us a ton of squash, so I decided to roast them. I recently learned that you can actually eat the skin on roasted squash. Cool, right? It goes soft and sticky and more importantly, you don’t have to peel the darn thing first!

I roasted the squash (skin and everything) in a sweet and tangy apricot glaze, and then tossed it with mixed greens and a lemon vinaigrette. Oh, how I love a warm, wilted salad… The lemon enhanced the apricot flavor and helped to cut through the richness of the squash. I finished it off with a scattering of pomegranate seeds and some fat manchego shavings. It felt like fall in a bowl.

 Warm Squash Salad with Apricot and Manchego | The Clever Carrot

Warm Squash Salad with Apricot and Manchego | The Clever Carrot

So the next time you’re at the market, check out what seasonal veggies they have to offer. And if you’re feeling uninspired, email me. We’ll make dinner together!

warm squash salad with apricot and manchego
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
Glaze
  • 2 heaped tbsp. apricot jam or quince paste
  • 2 heaped tbsp. whole grainy mustard
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
Salad
  • 2 acorn squash
  • 4 handfuls of mixed greens
  • 1 c. pomegranate seeds
  • ¾ c. manchego shavings
Lemon Vinaigrette
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • ⅓ c. good quality olive oil
  • salt & pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Slice the squash, un peeled, into wedges discarding the seeds. You should be able to get 16 wedges total.
  4. Mix together the apricot jam, mustard, and olive oil and coat the squash with the glaze.
  5. Spread evenly onto the baking sheet and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Roast for about 20 minutes or until tender.
  7. While the squash is roasting, make the vinaigrette. Whisk the lemon juice and the olive oil together until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. When the squash is done, wait 5 minutes for it to cool slightly.
  9. In a large bowl toss the squash, mixed greens and some of the vinaigrette together. Give it a taste and adjust with more vinaigrette, salt and/or pepper.
  10. Add the pomegranate seeds.
  11. With a vegetable peeler, shave some fat strips of manchego over the top.
  12. Enjoy with a nice glass of white wine.