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Winter-Squash Salad with Goat-Cheese Truffles

If dandelions are not in season, you can use another peppery green, such as mustard greens in this salad recipe from chef Mario Batali.

  • Servings: 10

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 1998

Ingredients

  • 2 eleven-ounce logs fresh goat cheese
  • 1 cup dark-green olives, pitted and finely chopped
  • 1 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and finely chopped
  • 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves removed and finely chopped
  • 2 medium butternut squash (about 4 pounds) peeled, seeded, and cut into 3/4-inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 scallions, dark-green parts removed, sliced thinly on the bias
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons whole black or brown mustard seeds
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound dandelion greens, long stems removed
  • Salt

Directions

  1. Cut each goat-cheese log into 13 equal pieces, and roll into 1 1/4-inch balls.

  2. Place the green olives in one bowl and the Kalamata olives in another. Roll half of the goat-cheese balls in the green olives, pressing firmly to coat well. Roll the remaining balls in the Kalamata olives, pressing firmly to coat well.

  3. Spread the parsley out on a clean work surface, and roll all the balls in the parsley. Transfer the truffles to a plate, and cover loosely with plastic. Refrigerate the truffles until ready to serve.

  4. In a medium stockpot, bring 3 quarts salted water to a boil. Add the squash, and cook until fork tender, about 8 minutes. Drain squash in a colander, and set aside.

  5. In a medium bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar, scallions, and mustard seeds. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Set the dressing aside.

  6. When ready to serve, transfer the squash to a large bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Add half of the dressing; toss to combine. Arrange the greens on a serving platter, and arrange the squash salad over the top; the heat of the squash will wilt some of the greens. Drizzle the remaining dressing over the entire salad. Garnish with the chilled goat-cheese truffles.

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