LOCAL FLAVOUR: A salad for sustainability
The best thing about growing your own food is overseeing the entire process, from planting, growing, harvesting, serving, eating, and then composting.
And with the Corporation of Delta’s simple Green Can program, the food you grow doesn’t have to wind up in a landfill.
Those are all great reasons to eat salad for Delta’s communications director and Ladner resident Lauren Munden.
“I’m kind of known as the salad guru when I’m invited to parties and asked to bring something,” she says while preparing one of her favourite recipes, a butternut squash spring salad.
“I like its versatility because you can mix and match what you like,” Munden says of the salad.
For instance, she likes to use goat cheese, but fans of feta or other cheeses are entirely a matter of personal taste.
She’ll also add spinach and kale, which is rich in folic acid and other nutrients.
In the winter she uses “craisins” but during the summer Munden drives to Westham Island Herb Farm for fresh strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries for her salads.
She even makes a homemade raspberry balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
“I prefer to make my own dressing so I know what’s in it.”
While she’s preparing food, Munden likes to keep Delta’s little food scrap bins nearby for things like orange, banana, or squash peels.
“It’s super convenient because you can have it on your countertop,” she says.
Because she uses a lot of fruit and vegetables in her recipes, Munden knows that the waste will be composted.
Would-be gardeners interested in growing their own food, can attend a free sustainable gardening workshop on March 21 at municipal hall at 6 p.m. (Delta residents only). You’ll learn about things like creating a habitat garden, small spaces and vertical gardening, and growing Asian greens. While you’re there you can pick up food scrap bins for $3, also available at the North and South Delta recreation centres.
For more information about Delta’s gardening workshops and green can program, visiting www.delta.ca.
And, as always, for this week’s delicious Local Flavour recipe, visit southdeltaleader.com.
8 to 10 cups of mixed greens or spinach and kale
1 ½ cup of roasted butternut squash
½ cup of craisins or 1 cup of fresh blueberries or strawberries
½ cup of toasted slivered almonds or chopped cashews
2 mushrooms thinly sliced
Handful of crumbled goat or feta cheese
Fresh cracked pepper
½ cup of light extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove minced
½ teaspoon of Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons of raspberry infused vinegar
½ teaspoon of brown or white sugar
Mix all the dressing ingredients together with a whisk until well combined.
Peel and cut up the butternut squash into cubes. Toss the cubed squash in olive oil and sprinkle with cracked pepper. Place on parchment paper on baking sheet and cook for approximately 30 to 40 minutes at 350 degrees. While the squash is cooking, prepare the salad ingredients in a bowl and toast the almonds in an ungreased fry pan for a few minutes. Once the squash and nuts have cooled, add to the salad. Then add the crumbled cheese on top.