I usually thank people for their recipes at the end, but not today. This week, not only does gratitude itself deserve top billing, but so does our appreciation for this particular recipe. So thank you to Steve Sando of Rancho Gordo in Napa CA, and to his friend Alexis Handelman, the creative brains behind both Alexis Baking Company and this genius of a recipe. The folks at your table, whether vegetarian or turkey-ish, will not be able to stop themselves from gobbling, gabbling and gibbering about this spectacular dish. Happy Thanksgiving to all, and thank you for reading YHIOYP!
4 cups cooked white, yellow and/or red beans (try Rancho Gordo Rebosero or Eye of the Goat beans)
4 cups cooked wild rice (try Rancho Gordo Wild Rice)
1 cup cubed pumpkin squash (try Sugar Pie, or even butternut squash)
1/2 large red onion
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
5 large Brussels sprouts
1 cup dried cranberries, rehydrated in water
1 fresh Fuyu persimmon, quartered and sliced thinly
1/3 cup baby arugula (rocket)
1/3 cup flat-leaf Italian parsley
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 tsp. stone-ground or grain mustard
2 tablespoons any combination minced fresh herbs (thyme, lemon thyme, chervil, chives, marjoram)
Salt and pepper
6 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
1 cup toasted walnuts or pecans, chopped coarsely
Preheat the oven to 400F. Toss the squash cubes and onion liberally with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast until tender, turning if necessary, 15 to 20 minutes. Once the onion is cool enough to handle, dice it into 1/2-inch cubes.
Meanwhile, peel and discard the tough outer leaves from the Brussels sprouts. Then steam the leaves for 3 minutes, until bright green and barely tender.
To make the vinaigrette, whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, mustard and herbs. Add salt and pepper to taste.
In a medium-large bowl, combine the beans, wild rice, and diced onion. Mix in half of the vinaigrette to start, and add more a bit at a time until you are satisfied. Add salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a large platter and spread evenly to cover the platter.
In another bowl, combine the roasted squash, Brussels sprouts, cranberries, persimmon, arugula, and parsley. Add 1/4 cup vinaigrette and mix gently to combine. Add more vinaigrette if desired, plus salt and pepper to taste. Scatter this mixture down the center of the beans and rice already on the platter.
Sprinkle the salad with pomegranate seeds and walnuts, along with any remaining vinaigrette.