Roasted Butternut Squash Panzanella Salad
Roasted Butternut Squash Panzanella Salad ~ I made this Roasted Butternut Squash Panzanella Salad for a very special holiday meal last week. You see amazing things happen when a group of strong, passionate women get together over delicious meals. I have a group wonderful food friends that not only enjoy each other company, we apprecaite going out together on a monthly basis to try new restaurants around town. For the last two years, this group decided to give back and get involved with a unique Girl Scout Troop ~ Troop 1500. This group of girls are in a situation that many can’t understand, let alone a child. The Troops mothers have all been incarcerated at some point during their child-raising years thus, leaving these girls to learn leadership and life skills on their own. One of the troop leaders (and teachers) is Joanna Champaigne, and after meeting her you can help but to feel her passion and love for these girls. Most holidays for the girls are spent apart from their mothers and many are left with nothing to open on Christmas Day –– the thought of this just gets me right in the heart. I think about my own children and just how lucky they are with all of the “stuff” that they have gotten over the holidays. I also think about the look of pure joy that comes over them when the open even the most elementary gifts –– every kid should get that at least once a year.
So, we got together and decided to do something about it with fabulous Arielle Clementine leading us through a slew of emails. Arielle and Joanna had the girls each make a wish list for themselves with notes about their brothers and sisters. You would think they would ask for amazing or some what extravagant gifts but most of them just wanted simple things –– like tooth brushes, socks, sweat pants, and even world peace (ok, this one not so simple be sweet). This was heart-warming to hear and I knew we were helping a truly an amazing group of girls. The ladies gathered for a potluck lunch and got to work. We stuffed 23 stockings and wrapped presents for all 23 girl scouts and their siblings and then contributed something to eat for the girl’s own holiday potluck party. After this event and seeing the photos of the joyful girls, I felt that my holidays were complete.
Want to learn more about this amazing national organization or get involved with a troop near you ? Click HERE!
Whatever you do this season, I hope you find a sprinkle of time to help a special group of your choice and enjoy your holidays (and this salad) my friends.
Peel, seed, and roast the squash with the onions and sage.
Serve this hearty, warm salad.