1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Begin with roasting the acorn squash. Cut the squash into 1-inch thick rings and discard seeds and pulp in the middle. Place squash in single layer on a baking tray greased with coconut oil. Sprinkle squash with freshly ground sea salt and pepper. Bake squash 15 minutes, flip, and bake for another 10 minutes. Allow squash to cool for 5 minutes before placing in your harvest bowl.
2. While squash is roasting, prepare the dressing. In a small bowl, whisk together tahini, maple syrup, lemon juice, garlic, and apple cider vinegar. Whisk in olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper.
3. In a large mixing bowl add in kale and drizzle with 2-3 tablespoons of maple tahini dressing. Using your hands, massage the dressing into the kale for a few minutes, or until kale leaves feel smooth and silky. Separate the massaged kale into two bowls and set aside.
4. Using a mandolin (very carefully) or a sharp knife, thinly slice the brussels sprouts. Layer the sprouts, along with the pomegranate seeds, cooked grain, and acorn squash on top of the kale in your bowls. Drizzle with some of the remaining dressing (not all of it – you will have extras!). Other fantastic toppings include: pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, sautéed mushrooms, feta cheese, nuts, avocado, roasted carrots, turnips, eggplant, sweet potato and cauliflower.
*You can also have this salad warmed: just simply sauté your kale over low heat for 1-2 minutes without the dressing and steam your brussels prior to being cut for 3 minutes. Serve kale warm with warm squash, warm grain, and thinly sliced brussels sprouts. Add in sautéed mushrooms and onions for extra oomph.
Photo courtesy of the author