Kale + Brussel Sprout Salad with Almonds, Spiced Squash and Tahini-Miso Dressing

I love the way our bodies naturally crave certain foods depending on the weather. In summer I'm up to my eyeballs in asparagus, courgettes and strawberries but as the weather turns I want rich, earthy flavours and deep, warm colours. Our bodies are crying out for foods like beetroot, squash, kale, red meat, blackberries or figs. I've also noticed that when it starts to get dark, damp and dismal I need a few more carbs to bulk out my meals and get me through the day - I'm not sure whether this is because I'm naturally more tired in the Winter or because my body is planning on gaining weight and then hibernating like a bear. 
I felt amazing after eating this dinner because it's absolutely crammed full of vitamins and minerals. Brassica vegetables like kale and brussel sprouts are some of the most nutrient-rich foods we can eat, by eating this dinner you're getting huge amounts of fiber, antioxidants and vitamins A (eyes), C (immune system) and K (blood). Who needs to spend money on supplements when you can just eat a bowl full of this yummy goodness?!   
It's a perfect combination of colours, textures and flavours. I've only recently started adding miso to salad dressings but let me just tell you: it's a game changer. It adds a great balance of sweet and savoury (they call that umami on Masterchef Australia), with an initial hit of saltiness and a background flavour of sticky sweetness that makes everything more delicious. Because it's fermented it also helps your gut produce more good bacteria (along with other fermented foods like tempeh and kimchi) so it's a winner all round! I roasted the squash low and slow with a hint of spice so that it had that sexy caramelised vibe to it. I also added a cup of cooked quinoa just to fill this salad out a bit, but it would be equally as good without it. Chuck a few pumpkin seeds and roughly chopped almonds in to the mix and you've got yourself a big bowl of Autumn! 

Serves 3

1 cup cooked quinoa
1 bag shredded kale, chunky stems removed
10 raw brussel sprouts, finely sliced
1 medium buttnernut squash, peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon hot chilli powder
olive oil
salt and pepper
1 handful almonds, roughly chopped
1 handful pumpkin seeds
juice of 1 lemon
squeeze of honey
5 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/3 cup tahini
3-5 tablespoons brown rice miso 
pinch of red chilli flakes
1/4 cup water

1. Preheat over to 170 fan. On a baking tray, coat squash cubes in olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika and chilli powder. Roast for about 30-40 minutes, keeping an eye on it to make sure it doesn't go too crispy.  
2. Mix together the shredded kale with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Make sure the leaves are all evenly coated. 
3. Mix together tahini, miso, chilli flakes, water, honey, vinegar, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Taste and leave on side. 
4. Stir quinoa, brussel spouts, kale and the salad dressing together. Serve in a bowl, topped with the roasted squash and nuts.

*This recipe is adapted from a recipe that I found on one of my favourite blogs, Cookie and Kate.

What's your favourite Autumn meal? 




8 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Anoushka, it tastes as good as it looks so I hope you like it! :)

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  2. This salad looks and sound delicious, definitely going to try this recipe out! :)
    Urban Obsessions // Vegan Food, Beauty & Lifestyle

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    1. I'm so pleased you like it! Let me know how it goes x

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  3. This looks so delish and so healthy! I've never thought of adding miso to salad dressing but now you've inspired me!

    Mili

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    1. I only tried to for the first time a few months ago but it's been a complete game changer, I never knew it would taste so delicious!

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  4. i love salads that are more interesting, definitely going to try this!

    danielle | avec danielle

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    1. Me too! Until a few years ago I really had no clue that there was more to salads than the bags of leaves and a bottle of ready-made dressing. If you want some more interesting salad recipes I have loads on my Pinterest - www.pinterest.com/isabellafb91

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