Thursday, January 10, 2013

roasted winter squash with tahini and za'atar

By Julie

I lost the homemade candy contest. 3rd place out of 3. That's okay, I guess the judges just preferred marzipan squeezed from a tube with shitty chocolate melted on top. Actually...I probably deserved it. I gave my friend some of my toffee and there was a hair in it. Maybe the judges got a hair piece, too. How embarrassing. How am I supposed to make cookies for people for Christmas? I should be in exile.
I'm really not feeling like writing much here. I had all sorts of wonderful things written down, then I accidentally deleted everything and whenever I do something stupid like that, I freak out and make everything worse. So instead of -Z-ing, I clicked somewhere else on the page to really confirm that I had deleted everything, thus really truly confirming the delete. Idiot. I don't even remember what I had written. Other than griping about losing the candy contest. And probably Christmas, something, something, cookies. Trying to rewrite what you'd deleted is such an awful feeling. Even when it's something as silly as a blog post. It makes me want to pull my hair out.
So here you are. The second part of my two part recipe. It's wonderful. I'm so happy I've reacquainted myself with tahini. It'd been so long since I'd eaten it. Middle Eastern food was a much larger part of my life during college, mostly in the form of falafel. Then shawarma when I finally wised up to eating meat. And hummus, of course. I used to make hummus all the time, so I always had a tub of tahini in the fridge. Haven't done that in a long time. Oh man, maybe I should make tahini Christmas cookies!
I hope you're not tired of winter squash yet. Try a couple kinds of squashes with this recipe - butternut, acorn, buttercup, kabocha, acorn, delicata, whatever. I used dumpling squash and butternut. You could even use root vegetables, instead of or in addition. I left the dumpling squash unpeeled for a little differentiation. I don't know, I think I'm still a little torn about whether to peel or not peel some winter squashes. Sometimes the peels can get too hard when you roast them and get stuck in your teeth. Ick. So, peel or don't peel - whatever you want.
roasted winter squash with tahini and za'atar
adapted from Jerusalem: A Cookbook

2 medium-sized winter squashes, peeled (or not), seeded, and cut into about 3/4 by 2-inch wedges
2 red onions, cut into wedges
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup tahini
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon za’atar
coarsely chopped parsley
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 475°F. In a large mixing bowl, toss the squash and onion with the oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and some pepper and toss well. Spread on a baking sheet and roast for 40 - 50 minutes, until nicely browned.

2. In a small bowl, mix the tahini with the lemon juice, garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add a little water, or extra lemon juice, to get it to a nice honey-like consistency.

Serve the vegetables warm or room temperature with the tahini sauce drizzled on top, and sprinkled with the za’atar and parsley.

Next I guess I have to make shawarma.

This was originally posted at my blog, the crankin' kitchen!

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