I love pumpkin and squash and am currently enamored of the Sweet Dumpling squash in particular. You can find them in smaller sizes than many other varieties, which means that -- like Delicata squash -- they are perfect for those of us who dine alone. That being said, you could use any other squash for this as well, though you would probably have to roast the squash in chunks and change the presentation illustrated above, which I quite like. I did make this Mabon salad on the appropriate day for the first time, hence the name, but I quite like it as a name for any witchy autumn salad from late September to mid-October!
1 small Sweet Dumpling Squash (If I made an arched dome with my fingers, my squash fit inside. Don't know how helpful that is.)
1/4 cup brown lentils
2 cups baby spinach
1/2 small red onion, peeled and cut into thin half moons
1/3 cup crumbled Feta
1 tsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
Salt to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Place the squash on a baking tray.
Bake uncovered for 30-45 minutes until the outside of the squash is burnished and the flesh is soft.
Remove from the oven and set aside for 5 minutes before cutting in half lengthwise and removing the seeds. Reserve one half for soup or add it to a fall salad.
While the squash is baking, cook your lentils by placing the lentils and the bay leaf in a pan along with water to several inches above the lentils. Cover and cook over medium heat for 22-25 minutes, until soft but not mushy. Drain well.
Heat the oil in a skillet and, as soon as it shimmers, add the red onion crescents. Cook until tender, stirring from time to time, about five minutes.
When the onions are soft, add a bit of salt and stir to combine. then, a handful at a time, stir in the spinach leaves and -- once they have started to wilt -- add another handful until you have added the full two cups to the pan and they have all wilted and reduced.
Stir in the lentils and most of the Feta, reserving a few teaspoons to scatter over the top.
Spoon the lentil-spinach mixture into half of the squash and sprinkle with the remaining Feta before digging in.