Crisp Fall Salad
- ¼ lb bacon, diced
- ½ cup bread cubes (½ inch dice)
- 1 butternut squash, ½ inch dice
- ½ cup wild rice
- salt and pepper
- light olive oil
- 3 tbsp grenadine syrup
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- ¼ tsp celery seed, ground
- ¼ tsp mustard seed, ground
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp onion powder
- pinch of white pepper
- 3 tbsp light olive oil
- 1 head romaine lettuce
- 1 granny smith apple, ¼ inch dice
- 4 oz gouda cheese, diced
- sunflower seeds, roasted and salted
- pumpkin seeds, roasted and salted
The night before you plan to serve the salad:
- Cook the bacon until crispy. Remove to a paper towel.
- Heat 2 tbsp of the rendered bacon fat and toss with the bread cubes. Continue cooking over medium-low heat until the outside of the bread has browned slightly. Remove to a paper towel.
- To 1 cup of boiling water, add a pinch of salt and the wild rice. Cover and simmer until all liquid has been absorbed, then drain in a mesh sieve. Run cold water over the rice to cool quickly.
- Toss the cubed squash in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil to coat and a pinch of salt and pepper. Spread on a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast at 400 °F until the edges of the cubes just begin to char. Remove from oven.
- Wait for all items to cool then refrigerate until service.
Prepare the dressing ahead of time, as well:
- Combine all ingredients except the olive oil. Whisk well to combine.
- While whisking, drizzle the olive oil into the mix. When the mixture is homogeneous and thickened, transfer to a container and refrigerate until service.
To serve the salad:
- Wash and tear the romaine into bite-size pieces.
- Shake the dressing to mix (if necessary). Reserve 2 tbsp, then pour the rest over the romaine. Toss to distribute the dressing.
- Split the dressed lettuce between 4 plates.
- Sprinkle 1 tbsp each of sunflower and pumpkin seeds over each salad.
- To each salad add an equal portion (in this order) of the squash, rice, apple, cheese, bread cubes, and bacon.
- Top each salad with a drizzle of the reserve dressing.