Fall is in full force. Even in the South, it's finally getting cooler, and the days are getting shorter. It's quite the adjustment having so much less daylight, and it's going to be even more drastic when daylight saving's time hits. Some people (us included), have a harder time than others when seasons change, particularly from Summer to Fall. It throws off our body clock. When it gets dark, you feel like the day is over even though it's only 7:30pm, and once the weather gets seriously cold, you're more inclined to stay inside. What helps is making sure to keep your normal routine-- continuing to exercise regularly and get a little fresh air and time outdoors while it's bright out. Another thing that helps, is some comforting, nourishing foods, emphasis on the nourishing. If you start indulging constantly or having too much sugar or heavy foods, you will not feel your best. Continue eating healthy foods that provide you with lots of nutrition (vitamins, minerals, enzymes, fiber), but shift your diet to match the season. Often times this means warm foods and sometimes starchier foods, which we naturally gravitate towards during cooler seasons. This warm butternut squash "salad" will do all of the aforementioned for you.
This recipe is so perfect for fall and would even be a great addition to your Thanksgiving dinner lineup (a good swap from similar recipes, like sweet potato casserole with brown sugar, butter, marshmellows, etc.). The butternut squash is roasted with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and cinnamon, along with pecans and gogi berries. After it's roasted, it's tossed together with a smidge of organic pure maple syrup and fresh rosemary. Gogi berries, a couple teaspoons of organic pure maple, cinnamon, and olive oil are much healthier, low-sugar alternatives to cranberries, butter, and refined sugar. We served ours on top a bed of fresh greens for a little extra nutrient boost. If your digestive system does all right with cheese, this recipe is delicious with feta or goat cheese (go for the goat cheese if you struggle with dairy, as it typically digests better).
1 butternut squash
2 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup pecans
1/4 cup gogi berries
2 tsp organic pure maple syrup
fresh rosemary to taste
salt + pepper to taste
cinnamon to taste
optional: fresh spinach (baby kale, arugula, or any greens)
optional: feta or goat cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Cube a butternut squash. Drizzle olive oil and season with salt, pepper, and cinnamon. Roast for 40 minutes.
3. 20 minutes through, add in the gogi berries and pecans, and give the squash a stir/flip.
4. When completely done, remove from the oven, drizzle the maple syrup, sprinkle the rosemary, along with the feta or goat cheese if you choose, and toss everything together.
5. Serve over a bed of spinach or greens of choice.