Two of my favorite vegetables are Brussels sprouts and butternut squash. This is one of my top choices for a Thanksgiving side dish, so I usually make a large bowl of this for the big feast – and not surprisingly – it’s often the first empty dish. When you roast vegetables, something magical happens… and never more than in this recipe. Plus, since I’m Irish, the colors of green and orange are on full display here!
SERVES 4 TO 6
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts
- 1 large butternut squash
- ¼ cup olive oil for cooking
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup wheat berries
- 3 cups water
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons minced shallot
- ½ cup cranberries
- 12 large mint leaves, chiffonade
- 1 cup toasted walnuts, crushed into large pieces
Preheat oven to 375° F. Clean and halve the Brussels sprouts. Toss in a large freezer bag with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet, single layer. Skin and seed the butternut squash and cube into pieces the size of half a Brussels sprout. Toss butternut squash pieces in a large freezer bag with remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer. Place the Brussels sprouts and butternut squash in the oven and roast until caramelized and soft (but not mushy).
Place the wheat berries in the water with salt. Bring to a boil, cover and cook until soft and chewy – about 20 to 30 minutes. In a large bowl, place the vinegar and slowly whisk in olive oil to make a creamy emulsion. Add the shallots and cranberries, and allow the cranberries to plump up in the liquid.
When the wheat berries are finished cooking (all the liquid should be absorbed; but if not, pour off any excess), pour the warm wheat berries into the vinaigrette and mix so the cranberries can continue to plump up.
Allow the vinaigrette mixture to come to room temperature, add the vegetables, mint and walnuts. Serve room temperature. You can keep the salad in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days, but remember to serve at room temperature.
Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Oceania Cruises!