Thursday, July 30, 2009

Roast Pumpkin and Bacon Wrapped Artichoke Heart Salad

On the subject of blogging, you'll never win as many points with a salad as you will a delectable dessert. In fact, usually a salad gets you the least amount of points possible. I wish the case were different for this beaut. Because lil 'ol girl really deserves it!

The first time I made this it was so good I made it again the three following consecutive days. A salad is a great little lunch or dinner meal for me. It's a super detox for those days I've been a naughty girl and broke Momma's rule of spoiling your dinner. I get the munchies ya'll! And unfortunately I didn't break it with crisp bread and apple wedges. It was probably candy or a home-baked treat. Tisk Tisk.

So then salad is the obvious choice for a redeeming dinner.

And I know what you're thinking, ohhh, isn't she greedy with two different meats. Yes, yes I am.

I believe the original idea for the artichoke bit came from Sandra Lee if I remember right. And it's a great little gem to keep up your sleeve. They're quick, cute, and delicious. And the perfect little hors d'oeuvre that is fast and easy when made on their own. But oh, don't be beguiled. When married with the pumkin they reach their true perfection. Actually, they and their fatty essence do more for the pumpkin since I cooked them together, and thus the pumpkin was the lucky recipient of the beautiful bacon drippings {which were not a lot since the bacon here isn't the same and is infact much leaner, so it was the perfect amount rather than them swimming in pools of grease}.

Toss in a little lemon juice, shallot, red wine vinegar, garlic, and olive oil with some fresh herbs if desired. Or heck, you've worked hard on the rest of the meal. Kick back with a bottle of store-bought dressing and I won't hate ya.

PS - you could easily grill instead of roast!

Roast Pumpkin and Bacon Wrapped Artichoke Heart Salad

Preheat oven to broil. Yes, BROIL

Cut the pumpkin, with skin on, into 1 inch cubes.

Season with salt and place in the broiler, only just while you prepare the artichoke hearts.

Wrap jarred artichoke hearts in bacon, it will probably take you 1/2 or 1/3 of a slice for each one. They might look something like this:

Place them in with the pumpkin and broil until golden or even charred, I like charred.

Meanwhile, prepare your greens -I like to use a baby salad mix with lot's of lovely leafs.

Add what you like, I chose:
sliced red onion
quartered cherry tomatoes {I like small bites!}
avacodo cubes
leftover roasted chicken, shredded {or just grill or panfry some in a little garlic, salt, olive oil and herbs -I used oregano since that is all I have left with this useless winter sun!}

This is a great use of leftover chicken and is a very satisfying and substantial meal. I love salads because lettuce and the vegetables that accompany them are pretty much the only raw vegetables I like.

The flavors of this salad work so well, the subtle yet giant flavor of the pumpkin, the spicy onion, the salty bacon. Mwah! So good. You'll love it or I'll double your money back, er...

And if you were skimming above and missed it, you can make a quick dressing for this beautiful salad from some minced garlic and shallot bathing in olive oil, lemon juice, and red wine vinegar with some salt and herbs thrown in for flavor.


Adam said...

Well I'm probably the first, but not the last to comment on how everything can be wrapped in bacon, and it makes it better. Eating bacon is like getting a raise at your job, you already had money, but it's a bonus :)

Salads are awesome, and this summer I'm getting full with them. Nothing like a little light and sweet to combat those days of splurging and BBQ :)

Rose @ Bite Me Kitchen said...

No wonder you ate this 3 days in a row! HELLOOOOooo bacon! That looks outstanding. I love the blend of ingredients!

Shangri La Food said...

Beautiful.. Salad, bacon.. Great pics.

Greetings from Croatia

C Hall said...

mmm. totally my kind of salad! I'll have to stop in at coles for the better bacon. my mouth is already watering for that bacon-y vinegar-y goodness :)

Ashley said...

Your blog is beautiful and these look so delicious!

Foodycat said...

In the words of The Simpsons - "you don't win friends with salad"! But this one is AMAZING. All my favourite things. I wonder if I could get some cheese in as well?

Leslie said...

Poor salads, get a bad rap. When they are the ones that should be getting all the praises for not making our asses fatter!

Laura @ Hungry and Frozen said...

Am totally getting back into the swing of blogging, and I hate not keeping up with awesome blogs like this. Esp when you possess such genius that you wrap bacon round artichokes. You're so right about the sweet vs savoury - sweet things always get more hits! But I love the look of this salad (especially with avocado in it, yum). Will defo be back :D not just empty promises this time!

Pam said...

I personally like salad posts more than dessert posts - so this one is making me very, very happy. I am loving all the ingredients... mmmm good. Great one Nat.

Karine said...

Salads are just ssooo great :)

I love your combination of flavors in your salad.. I understand you to have eaten it 3 days in a row!

Kristen said...

What a gorgeous salad. I've been in a salad mood lately and love trying new ones. Have to bring a salad to a BBQ this weekend and this one is topping the lists of possibilities :)

Miranda said...

You have an incredible blog. Beautiful pics and amazing food.

I am so glad I tumbled upon it!

Thank you so much for sharing.

Becky said...

I have a request! I come to you as a prego momma with a hankering for what I have no skills to make...Do you have any suggestions on how I might make a creamy pumpkin or roasted tomato soup? I'd take either with glee! I had a taste a bakery in AF called Paradise Bakery, and it was heavenly. No idea how to recreate it -- could you help?!

Aries said...

Most of the photos you post makes me drool.

hot garlic said...

Thanks every one so much for the comments, I'll be answering your questions personally soon! I SO beyond appreciate your beautiful comments though, thanks very much!

Sunny said...

Hey Nat!! It's Sunny. I can't wait to try this little number. Can you tell me what kind of pumpkin to buy? I've never cooked with an actual pumpkin. Will they have it at Harmons?

I'm trying many of your other recipes too. Tell Ben "Hi".

maybelle's mom said...

Lovely lovely.

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