While I love maple syrup year-round, something about fall usually has me craving it. And while I like pancakes or waffles slathered with butter and doused with maple syrup, I really love incorporating maple syrup in savory dishes. I think it pairs especially well with squash and other fall vegetables.
I've made ginger-maple baked delicata squash in the past and also some maple-glazed baby vegetables (Brussels sprouts, beets, and turnips). Thinking about these two dishes inspired me to make these maple-orange roasted fall vegetables.
I grabbed a butternut squash, a giant yam, a bag of small Brussels sprouts, a hunk of ginger root, an orange, and a pomegranate at the grocery store and turned to my fridge and pantry for some maple syrup and apple cider vinegar.
I decided to roast the vegetables and got the squash and yam going first. I added the Brussels sprouts a little later so they'd stay somewhat crisp and contrast nicely with the softer orange vegetables. And I stirred in some maple syrup to glaze all of the vegetables.
Once they were nicely roasted, I tossed the vegetables with a simple maple vinaigrette, consisting of maple syrup (of course!), apple cider vinegar, freshly squeezed orange juice, and a little grated ginger.
Then I transferred the vegetables to a pretty serving dish (they can also be served right from the roasting pan) and gave the vegetables a last drizzle of maple syrup. Just before serving, I sprinkled grated orange zest and pomegranate seeds on top for a little splash of color and flavor.
These maple-orange roasted fall vegetables would make a delicious, colorful Thanksgiving side dish but are also easy enough to make any night of the week. (And they require only one pan.) If you crave lightly sweetened maple-flavored fall vegetables like I do, you'll definitely want to make this dish!
Maple-Orange Roasted Fall Vegetables
This medley of roasted butternut squash, yam, and Brussels sprouts is lightly sweetened with maple syrup and flavored with a simple orange- and ginger-spiked maple vinaigrette.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
1 (2.5-pound) butternut squash, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes (about 5½ cups)
1 (1-pound) yam, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
3 tablespoons canola oil
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved, ends and outer leaves trimmed (about 2 cups)
4 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons orange juice (from ½ orange)
2 teaspoons cider vinger
½ teaspoon grated ginger
½ cup pomegranate seeds
1 tablespoon orange zest (from 1 orange)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Toss squash and yam cubes with 2 tablespoons canola oil and ½ teaspoon salt in large bowl. Spread in large roasting pan. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring halfway through roasting.
Toss Brussels sprouts with 1 tablespoon canola oil and ¼ teaspoon salt in bowl. Stir Brussels sprouts and 1 tablespoon maple syrup into squash mixture and continue to roast for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through roasting.
Meanwhile, whisk together 2 tablespoons maple syrup, orange juice, cider vinegar, and ginger in small bowl.
Toss roasted vegetables with maple vinaigrette. Transfer to serving dish. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon maple syrup.
Sprinkle pomegranate seeds and orange zest over vegetables and serve.
Note: If you prefer firmer squash and yam, roast them for only 20 minutes before adding the Brussels sprouts. I like the contrast of the soft squash and yam with the crunchier Brussels sprouts.
Leftover idea: Make some pasta (penne would be good here). Reserve about ½ cup of the cooking water when you drain it. Stir some goat cheese and a little of the cooking water into the pasta. Use as much water as you need to melt and loosen the goat cheese. Stir in leftover maple-orange roasted fall vegetables. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until the vegetables are warmed through. Dig in!
What's your favorite use for maple syrup?
I submitted this recipe to the Pure Canadian Maple Syrup "Think Outside the Griddle" contest.