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Cavolo nero and butternut squash

A delicious and colourful combination of antioxidant-packed ingredients. I'm quite obsessed with cavolo nero lately, eating it almost daily and putting it into salads and soups. This is one of my favourite way of preparing it, combining it with the slightly sweet butternut squash and red onions, adding plenty of mixed seeds and a touch of mustard dressing, to lift the whole dish up. You can prepare the squash and the cavolo nero ahead and assemble it last minute, or a couple of hours before serving, and left overs keep very well!

Photo: Inbal Bar Oz

PREP - 20 minutes

COOK - 40-45 minutes



1 butternut squash (approx. 1kg) peeled and cut into wedges

1 tsp garlic powder

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 red onion, thinly sliced

2 sprigs of rosemary, left whole

200g cavolo nero, hard stalk removed and cut in rough strips

1 tbsp dried cranberries

1 tbsp mixed seeds + extra to sprinkle/decorate


1 tsp French mustard

1 tsp honey (or maple syrup)

1 tsp lemon juice

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt and black pepper


  • Heat oven to 220°C (fan).

  • Spread the peeled butternut wedges on an oven tray lined with baking parchment, add the garlic, two tablespoons of oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Mix well to ensure the butternut is coated with oil and seasoning.

  • Roast for 20 minutes, then add the red onions and rosemary and mix again so they are coated with oil.

  • Roast for a further 20-25 minutes until the squash is soft and deep golden. Discard the rosemary stalks.

  • Remove and discard any hard stems from the cavolo nero, cut the leaves into strips, wash and drain it well. I use a salad spinner to remove the excess water.

  • Soak the dried cranberries in water for 5 minutes so they are juicier. Add to the cavolo nero in a bowl with the seeds and a drizzle of oil. Mix with your hands, squeezing the cavolo leaves to soften them so you can eat them raw. Don’t skip this step!

  • Mix the dressing ingredients — either by adding the oil slowly to the other ingredients whilst mixing or shaking them all in a small jar. Pour the dressing onto the cavolo nero.

  • Assemble the salad by gently combining the roasted squash with the dressed cavolo nero. Scatter with mixed seeds before serving.


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