A few weeks ago I was elbow deep in pumpkin. My development project for Food & Wine’s website has me focused on certain recipe categories (like fried rice or black beans), which means I go nuts on one ingredient for 5 days straight, and then subsequently never want to eat it again. Mealku has been helpful in making sure I don’t have 10 pounds of green bean casserole sitting in my fridge. But for the most part, I’ve just been hosting a lot more leftover lunches and dinners than usual.
Last Friday, I had a big group of girls over to eat the dregs of my casserole project. I used to host similar smorgasbord nights when I was testing recipes for the book. You know, 20 people, 10 meatballs, 2 types of spinach dip, and 5 bites of chicken stew. Not your typical meal, but fun nonetheless. Or so I hope?
This salad was one of the ways I re-purposed the 6 types of roasted pumpkin wedges I tested. I’ve appropriately dubbed it leftover jack-o-lantern salad, as I might not be the only one this time of year with a few decorative gourds to get rid of in edible form. I’ve been on a bit of a white miso kick, and used it with a little lemon juice to create a bright salty dressing for the sweet roasted pumpkin and spicy arugula. Not a bad leftovers meal, if I do say so myself.
I’m psyched that it’s Halloween but am a little bit behind on my costume plans. Tonight I’m going to my friend Keith’s in Carroll Gardens to watch the little kiddos parade and trick or treat, and then eat dinner, which may or may not include 3 types of ancient grain salads I tested yesterday.
Perhaps you guys can help me decide on my costume for today and tomorrow. I’m torn between a Troll Doll, Patty Mayonnaise, and Princess Leiawitz (think bagels for buns). Let me know your thoughts in the comments and if you have any other clever ideas!
Roasted Pumpkin and Arugula Salad
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut the top and bottom off the pumpkin using a large chef’s knife. Halve lengthwise and scoop out the flesh and seeds with a spoon. Cut the cleaned pumpkin into 1/4-inch wedges.
In a large mixing bowl, toss the pumpkin with 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Arrange in an even layer on the baking sheet and cook in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes, turning the wedges halfway through the cooking process, until they are browned and tender.
Meanwhile, whisk together the miso, siracha, lemon juice, and remaining oil in a large mixing bowl. Season with salt.
Toss the arugula, cooked pumpkin, and half the pepitas with the lemon miso dressing. Transfer to a serving plate and top with the remaining pepitas.
Serve the pumpkin on a platter warm or at room temperature and garnish with the cilantro.