Warm winter salad: think red cabbage, squash, and cauliflower

Great tray bakes!

I’ve been testing this warm salad just in time for Christmas. It’s a winner! It will make its merry way on my Christmas table, and if you are on the lookout for something new, quick, and delicious, this might do just the trick: warm red cabbage, squash, and cauliflower salad with sweet and tangy dressing.

This warm salad is definitely a show-stopper. Dark marbly purple cabbage wedges, bright orange squash bites, and crisp, white cauliflower florets are simply dazzling to look at. Peppered with chili flakes and tossed in olive oil, these only take 30 minutes to bake. The best part, as with most salads, comes with the dressing. Fresh, lemony with warm notes from mustard and sweet, sweet honey. I used my regular thyme honey. As for capers there is a steady supply of my favourite Santorini capers that I pick up wherever I find them.

Of course, I didn’t come up with this lovely recipe; all credits go to Chetna Makan. I picked it up on her Waitrose column this December. I plead guilty for substituting maple syrup with honey and pretty obvious for me, but I used olive oil instead of rapeseed oil. Still, anything else is so simple to put together with ingredients already in your kitchen it’s hard to resist.

Warm winter salad: Red Cabbage, squash and cauliflower with tangy, lemon-mustard dressing

  • 1 small cauliflower (cut into florets)
  • ½ butternut squash (cut into cubes)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 1 small red cabbage (cut into smallish wedges)
  • 1 lemon for its juice and a bit of rind
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp thyme honey
  • A few stalks of parsley
  • 2 tbsp capers (think Santorini)
  • Sea salt flakes
  1. Preheat your oven to 200C (gas mark 6). Place cauliflower florets and squash bites in a large roasting tray and toss with olive oil, chili flakes, and a healthy pinch of sea salt flakes. Let them roast and set a timer for 20 minutes; this is when you need to add in the cabbage wedges.
  2. While the veg are roasting, cut the red cabbage in wedges, small enough to handle with a fork later.
  3. Toss with a bit of olive oil and salt again and add them in once your timer sets off.
  4. It will be ready in ten minutes, 30-35 minutes from the initial cooking time.
  5. For the dressing, squeeze a lemon, and keep some rind if you like. Combine with mustard, capers, honey, and olive oil. Drizzle over the warm veg when ready to serve.

Adapted by Chetna Makan

Salad

Feel free to add in nuts. The original recipe called for hazelnuts but I can see almonds in there too, or seeds such as pumpkin and sunflower seeds. And for those of you who eye roll at the thought of cauliflower, it’s just because you’ve never had it baked! Once you tried the combination of red cabbage, squash, and cauliflower you will not look back.

Wishing you the warmest holiday season! If you are up to some Greek festive baking click here.

From London with love,

Eugenia

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