When it comes to seasonal food, Autumn erupts with an abundant feast of rich, hearty produce. The fresh flavours of summer are swapped for those with warmth and depth, and there is notable step change where feelings of comfort and nostalgia radiate from the kitchen.
This dish brings together the flavours and textures of the autumn harvest in a kaleidoscopic muddle that truly is a feast for the eyes. From the soft, golden flesh of the squash to the juicy, pomegranate jewels, the toppling layers of vibrant colours glistening with honey sheen make this an expressive and inviting spectacle of flavour.
There’s quite a few elements to this recipe, but each plays a significant role in the overall taste. The orange zest is a punchy contrast to the creamy goats cheese, while the sweet, sticky honey pairs with the squash and figs perfectly.
It might look like a centerpiece, but what I love about this recipe is the fact it’s so effortless to make. Apart from prepping the veg and loosely assembling it at the end, it mostly involves chucking everything in a roasting pan and leaving it to cook.
When it comes to assembling the salad, find the biggest serving plate you have and let the ingredients fall into place. I always think a rustic, jumbled salad is far more appetising then one neatly displayed.
- 1 Butternut Squash
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
- 4 tbsp Honey
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 8 large fresh figs, halved
- 100ml olive oil
- 50g rocket
- 100g soft goats cheese
- Seeds from 1/2 a Pomegranate
- Salt & pepper to season
- Pre-heat the oven to 180° C
- Combine the thyme, olive oil, honey and salt in a bowl. Add in the butternut squash and toss until it is evenly coated
- Arrange the squash on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 25 minutes, turning halfway
- Coat the figs in the same mixture and add to the baking tray. Roast for an additional 15-20.
- To make the dressing, mix the orange zest with the remaining honey, thyme and olive oil and season with salt and pepper
- Assemble the salad by combining the rocket, squash and figs on a large serving plate. Sprinkle on the goats cheese and pomegranate seeds and finish with a drizzle of the dressing.