Recipe courtesy of Executive Chef Christopher Carey

Kabocha Squash Soup with Pomegranate and Pepitas
Serves 6

• 1 small kabocha squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed?
• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil?
• 4 medium shallots, peeled and thinly sliced?
• 3 medium Gala apples (about 1 pound) peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces?
• 1 teaspoon thyme?
• 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon?
• 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar?
• 5 cups vegetable stock, plus more if needed?
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper?
• 2 Tablespoons pomegranate seeds and pepitas

• Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place the squash cut side down on baking sheet, and roast until completely tender when pierced with a knife, 45 to 60 minutes.
• Remove from oven and let it cool to the touch.
• Scoop out 2 cups of flesh and set aside, reserving remaining squash for another use. (This step can be completed up to 2 days in advance.)
• Heat oil in a large pot set over medium heat.
• Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.
• Add the apples and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, 5 to 7 minutes.
• Stir in thyme and cinnamon and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add the vinegar, stock and reserved roasted squash.
• Raise the heat to medium high and bring to a simmer; reduce heat to low and cook, uncovered, until the vegetables are soft.
• Remove the pot from heat and let cool slightly. Puree the soup until smooth using an immersion blender or working in batches in a standard blender. (Remember to hold the blender lid tightly with a folded towel when blending hot soup!)
• Season with salt and pepper to taste.
• Divide the soup between bowls. Top with toasted pepitas and pomegranate seeds.

Kale and Shaved Brussels Sprout Salad with Pomegranate and Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette
Serves 4 - 6

• 3 cups kale (my favorite is lacinato), ribs removed & chopped?
• 1 cup Brussels sprouts, shaved?1 cup Gala apple, sliced?1/2 cup almonds, toasted and chopped?
• 3 Tablespoons pomegranate seeds
Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette
• 1 tsp dijon mustard
• 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
• 2 tsp pomegranate molasses
• 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
• 6 Tablespoons olive oil
• Salt & pepper to taste
• For the vinaigrette, place all the ingredients into a jar with a tight fitting lid.
• Shake well until emulsified.
• Set aside.
• Toss the kale and Brussels sprouts together in a large bowl.
• Start by adding 1-2 large spoonfuls of dressing into the kale mixture.
• Mix well, adding more dressing as needed.
• If times allows, return the kale to the fridge for an hour or so.
• The dressing will soften the kale leaves a bit.
• Garnish the salad with the sliced apple, almonds, and pomegranate seeds.

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