Balsamic Butternut, Kale and Cranberry Panzanella

Are you knee-deep in vacation overwhelm? Me, too. I got the majority of my vacation shopping rectified and consumed an appropriate supper last night, so that’s something. I’m going to call this salad an appropriate dinner-in-a-bowl. It has lots of roasted winter season squash, healthy greens, entire grains, seeds and olive oil. Given, this blog site required another kale salad like my closet required another motorbike coat … which is to state not truly however definitely.

Standard panzanella is a summertime salad made with cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, vinegar and homemade croutons made from stagnant bread. As far as I can inform, however, any salad including veggies, vinaigrette and huge ol’ homemade croutons certifies as panzanella nowadays. This salad requires a healthy quantity of olive oil, obviously, so now looks like prime-time show to share some images of my journey to the olive oil harvest this fall.

butternut and me

California Olive Cattle ranch welcomed me and a couple of other blog writers (Erin/Naturally Ella, Kelsey/Happyolks, Brenda/A Farmgirl’s Dabbles, Stacey/Delightful Crumb!) out to the Sacramento location for a number of days at the end of October. The 2 beautiful women in charge of marketing for California Olive Cattle Ranch, Kirsten and Grace, were warm and inviting and fit right in with the remainder of the team.

Throughout those 2 days, I was simply socializing with buddies who are as enthusiastic about great food as I am. It was grand. I wasn’t bound to publish about the journey, however it was so motivating and informative that I didn’t wish to keep all of it to myself.

olives and butternut

Aren’t those green and purple olives beautiful? I can’t stop appreciating them. Naturally, the olive oil harvest evoked the almond harvest I participated in a number of months prior. There are some strong resemblances in between the 2 crops, although the equipment runs in a different way.

To eliminate almonds from the trees, a maker shakes the base of the tree to make the almonds are up to the ground, where they dry in the sun. With olives, however, a much taller maker with an olive tree-sized opening drives down the rows of olive trees while mechanical arms developed inside thoroughly and rapidly select the olives off the branches. The base of the maker captures the olives and they are instantly off to be processed and developed into olive oil.

Olives weaken quickly as soon as they have actually been selected from the tree, so the clock begins ticking the 2nd the olive falls. I was so amazed by the speed and performance in olive oil production at California Olive Cattle Ranch. Those individuals are enthusiastic you might state consumed with producing the greatest quality olive oil at a grand scale. They sent me some amazing Limited Reserve oil after the journey, however I frequently grab the Daily range at Target.

California Olive Ranch 2014 Limited Reserve

California Olive Cattle ranch is intriguing due to the fact that unlike nearly all other olive oil manufacturers, they just push the olives as soon as. They truly milk those valuable olives for all they deserve. The very first pushing yields extra-virgin olive oil, which is the purest olive oil.

We tasted incredibly fresh olive oil (see the image listed below, look how green it is coming out of television!) and I was stunned when the olive oil struck the back of my throat. Those good-for-you polyphenols buuuurn. The polyphenols are accountable for offering olive oil its spicy taste and the factor that purchasing fresh, quality olive oil is so crucial.

fresh olive oil

how to prepare kale salad

The extra-virgin difference is crucial when it pertains to cooking. You might have heard prior to that olive oil should not be utilized for high heat cooking. Nevertheless, the most recent research study discovered that pure extra-virgin olive oil can be prepared at high heat (approximately 420 degrees Fahrenheit) without breaking down. The later pressings of olive oils consist of more pollutants that trigger the olive oil to weaken at heats, so you truly wish to utilize extra-virgin olive oil when it pertains to cooking. I heard this very first in California, and it was repeated by a little natural manufacturer in Israel.

So why the confusion? In the past, research study on cooking with olive oil was dirty due to the fact that olive oil labeling is difficult organization. Abroad olive oil manufacturers have actually entered into problem for deliberately mislabeling olive oils as “extra-virgin” when they are not. Some “olive” oils have actually even been discovered to consist of oils besides olive oil, like canola oil or even worse.

croutons and kale salad

Supermarket today have lots of extra-virgin olive oil genuine or phony that has actually gone rancid currently, too. We tested rancid oils side-by-side with California Olive Cattle ranch ranges. I truthfully didn’t acknowledge the rancid oils due to the fact that they tasted like the olive oil I ‘d understood for several years, however California Olive Cattle ranch’s items tasted unquestionably much better and more intricate.

That’s why it’s so crucial to purchase fresh olive oil from trusted providers. I select domestic olive oil due to the fact that we have policies in location to avoid mislabeling. Plus, usually speaking, U.S. manufacturers utilize advanced contemporary innovation that gets fresh olives into bottles faster. More ideas? Select bottles that are dark in color, which assist obstruct destructive light from reaching the oil inside, and keep the bottle in a dark, cool cabinet with the cover safely attached.

California Olive Ranch harvest

Goodness, I didn’t indicate to go on an olive oil tirade today, however here we are. All science aside, this salad is scrumptious! If you make it, will you please post a picture on Instagram and tag it #cookieandkate so I can go see it?

( To find out more about olive oil, take a look at this NPR piece on freshness and this resource about cooking with olive oil.)

olive oil panzanella

butternut and olives

Balsamic kale panzanella

butternut panzanella

Butternut, kale and cranberry panzanella salad with balsamic vinaigrette

Winter panzanella recipe

Balsamic Butternut, Kale and Cranberry Panzanella

  • Author: Cookie and Kate
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes
  • Prepare Time: 40 minutes
  • Overall Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 salads 1 x
  • Classification: Salad
  • Food: Tuscan

5 from 16 evaluations

This winter season panzanella salad includes roasted butternut squash, kale, toasted croutons, cranberries and shallots tossed in homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Dish yields 3 to 4 meal-sized salads.


Roasted butternut squash

  • 1 medium butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled and sliced into 3/4- inch cubes
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and newly ground pepper

Toasted croutons and seeds

  • 1 little loaf (about 1/2 pound) crusty entire grain bread, sliced into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 tablespoons seeds, such as pepitas (pumpkin seeds), sesame seeds and/or sunflower seeds
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Balsamic vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • Newly ground pepper, to taste

Kale salad

  • 1 big lot of Tuscan kale or routine curly kale, ribs got rid of and sliced into little, bite-sized pieces
  • 2/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 medium shallot (the entire bulb, papery skin got rid of), sliced up incredibly thin


  1. Preheat oven to 420 degrees Fahrenheit with racks in the upper 3rd and lower 3rd of the oven. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper for simpler clean-up (I utilized one big half-sheet for the butternut and a smaller sized quarter-sheet for the croutons).
  2. Roast the squash: On among your lined baking sheets, toss the cubed butternut in sufficient olive oil to gently coat all sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and organize the butternut in a single layer. Roast on the lower 3rd rack till the butternut hurts throughout and caramelized on the edges, about 35 to 40 minutes, tossing at the 20 minute mark when you include the croutons throughout action 4.
  3. Prepare the croutons: On your other baking sheet, integrate the cubed bread with the seeds and salt. Drizzle on 2 tablespoons olive oil and toss to gently coat the bread. Do not stress over attempting to get the seeds to stay with the bread, simply attempt to ensure they’re gently covered in oil. Set up the mix in a single layer so no croutons are on top of one another.
  4. When you have actually tossed the butternut and put it back on the lower rack, put the sheet of croutons on the upper rack. Toast the bread for 10 to 13 minutes, till the edges are golden. Eliminate the croutons from the oven and examine the squash it will most likely require 5 to 10 more minutes prior to the edges are caramelized. When the butternut is done, eliminate the pan from the oven and set it aside to cool.
  5. To prepare the vinaigrette: Blend together all of the components till emulsified.
  6. To prepare the kale: Transfer the sliced kale to a huge salad bowl. Spray a little pinch of sea salt over the kale and massage the leaves with your hands by gently scrunching huge handfuls at a time, till the leaves are darker in color and aromatic, about 30 seconds.
  7. Last assembly: Include the grated cheese, cranberries and shallot to the bowl. Drizzle enough dressing into the bowl to gently coat the leaves (you may not require all of it), then toss to coat. Include the roasted butternut and croutons and carefully toss to integrate. Drizzle in additional dressing if the salad looks like it requires it. For finest taste, let the salad rest for 10 minutes prior to serving.


Make it gluten totally free: Alternative great gluten-free bread or avoid the bread completely.
Make it dairy free/vegan: Avoid the cheese. You may wish to include some sliced up kalamata olives to offset the cheese’s saltiness, or perhaps include a dab of white miso to the dressing for some umami.
Make it nut totally free: Make sure your entire grain bread is nut totally free.
Modification it up: Alternative sweet potato or another winter season squash for the butternut. Attempt sliced pecans or walnuts rather of seeds. Alternative arugula or child spinach for the kale (no requirement to massage it). Alternative fresh pomegranate arils for the dried cranberries. All scrumptious concepts!
Storage recommendations: This salad is finest served immediately however keeps well over night if you wish to load it for lunch the next day.

▸ Nutrition Info

The info revealed is a quote offered by an online nutrition calculator. It needs to not be thought about an alternative to an expert nutritional expert’s guidance. See our complete nutrition disclosure here.

Disclaimer: My journey to California for the olive oil harvest was spent for by California Olive Cattle Ranch, however I’m discussing it due to the fact that it was remarkable!

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